Harold (and his Person, Alice)
The Pug Sisters fell in love the very first time we saw Harold’s dignified, serious face, so we’re pugged for our Tales of Pug People interview with Handsome Harold and his sweet Person, Alice (who is from the Philippines, so we have that whole AAPI thing going on since one of us is married to a Filipino). It was particularly fun to talk to someone so new to Pug Personhood, as Alice sounds like a teenager with her first crush. Ah, young (pug) love…
PP: Alice, give us your backstory, your fabulous pug history tale.
Alice: Harold is my first pug. I was certain I wasn’t a dog person, but my husband and kids were begging for a pug and it was the three of them against me. I said okay, I’ll support you, but…
PP: We’re feeling a big “but” coming.
Alice: But when we got him, I’m the one who falls in love.
PP: Yep! That’s what pugs do to you.
Alice: Before Harold, I was “no dogs in the bed!” Now he’s our baby, next to us in the bed. Harold started out in the garage, we made a whole section of it as his special room. But then, slowly, he started going to my son’s room, and then to my room, and then he’s sleeping next to me. I’m like, what happened?! I’m with him more than my kids. I’ve never felt this way before.
PP: Pug is a many-splendored thing. How did Harold get his name? It’s so perfect for him and his manly presence.
Alice: My husband’s brother passed away and he had a dog named Kumar. Do you know that movie, Harold and Kumar? So, we try to honor his brother, but in a funny way.
PP: We're looking forward to "Harold and Kumar Go To Pugpalooza". And we have to say, we absolutely love Harold’s facial expression. The utter disdain!
Alice: Yes, he is actually so sweet and cuddly, but his face always looks so serious.
PP: How has having Harold changed your family?
Alice: Well, first of all, Harold never wants to be alone. One time, we went to Disneyland for the day and we leave him in the house with a camera so we can keep an eye on him. And all we hear is him crying! So, the whole time we’re at Disneyland-- for the very first time!-- all we can focus on is poor Harold and we’re constantly like, “Oh no! Harold!”. So… we left early.
PP: Of course, you did. You can’t enjoy Mickey and Minnie with a sobbing pug back at home.
Alice: And from that time on, we said no theme parks. Now our family activity is camping, because Harold can come with us.
PP: Ohhhh, we love that you changed your entire vacation structure because of Harold's needs.
Alice: Yes. We even took him to Vegas with us.
PP: We’re sure he was a big hit on the strip. We’re so enjoying that you’re relatively new to this and you’ve taken it into your heart so completely.
Alice: In the beginning, my relatives were laughing at me because I was saying that I’m Harold’s mom, that he’s my baby. But they got used to it, and now my niece has three pugs. We got our first one at the same time, but they just kept adding. I understand, because pugs are so sweet.
PP: Look at what you did, Alice! You started a pug trend in your family.
Alice: As Filipinos, we have this thing where we all say the rosary in a big group. And the first time we did it when we had Harold, suddenly there was this big snore! The kids were giggling and almost couldn’t finish.
PP: Yes, it was an adjustment for our Filipino family, too. My (Shari’s) mother-in-law kept saying, “Oh no, don’t kiss them on the mouth! They lick their behinds!”
Alice: Yes, when Harold peepees, he waits afterward at the door for someone to wipe his feet. It’s a Filipino thing, like, you have to wear different shoes in the house, you cannot walk inside with your outside shoes. It’s the same with Harold. Not shoes, but clean feet.
PP: Well, yeah, obviously you have to have different paws for inside the house. Alice, does Harold have any quirks?
Alice: Um, yes. He pees with his back legs up.
PP: Like a handstand?! No way! You’re our first handstand pee pug!
Alice: We put a video of it on TikTok and it got banned. Well, you could watch it, but you had to click a special link saying that you knew you were watching a restricted video. We were like, Harold is just peeing! With a little extra flip.
PP: Alice, this has been delightful, seeing you with your first pug love. Tell us, do you have a True Pug Confession?
Alice: I get up in the middle of the night and grab Harold and make him sleep with me like a baby. I tuck him in tight next to me.
Alice: And before I leave for work, I wrap him in a blanket. Every single day. He’s going to be alone for almost one hour until my mother comes to the house, so I need him to feel like someone is hugging him.