Andy Cohen on how his rescue dog changed his life, and how you can change theirs
You know and love Andy Cohen for so many reasons -- I mean, he's the one who brought The Real Housewives to your television screens, people. And while he's working on countless shows with Bravo and has a new book coming out in the fall (a sequel to his wildly popular Andy Cohen Diaries), we have another reason to love Andy: He's passionate about helping animals.
We recently had the chance to sit down with the Watch What Happens Live host to talk about his latest initiative and what it means to him. He adopted his beloved (and oh-so-adorable) dog Wacha from a shelter, and he's determined to use his platform to help even more dogs and pets in need of a little extra love.
Teaming up with Purina ONE and the Mutt-i-Grees program, Andy wants to bring animal rescue -- and organizations that support it -- to the forefront. Read on for our interview with Andy.
AOL: Can you tell us the story of how you and Wacha came together?
Andy Cohen: I found him on PetFinder! I was looking for a rescue and I went to the North Shore Animal League, I went to shelters, and I was thinking "Am I connecting with this dog?" I remember I met one dog called Hemingway that was really hyper and I was like "Is this my dog?"
And then when I saw [Wacha's] picture, I just totally melted. And I emailed -- after my show one night -- I emailed the rescue organization twice in the middle of the night saying "I have to have this dog!" It was love at first sight.
AOL: How has he changed your life?
AC: Oh, in every way. He's opened my heart up, he's enriched me. It's about caring for someone else other than yourself... I was so sick of myself! He's my buddy, he's my best buddy, my companion at all times.
AOL: Why did you choose to work with Purina ONE + Mut-i-grees?
AC: It's really cool -- Purina ONE gave a big chunk of money to the Mutt-i-grees program, which puts rescue dogs in classrooms with students. The students learn how to care for the pets, and it enriches the lives of the students and the dogs, who get to interact with kids.
So I joined up for the Purina ONE 28-Day Challenge with my dog, and changed his diet (which he loves.) And Purina is giving $10 for every person who signs up to Mutt-i-grees foundation. So it's raising money for a great cause, and making my dog healthier, which is all I care about.
AOL: What is your favorite thing about dogs?
AC: Their devotion and their loyalty. And they're so cute! There's a famous Peanuts cartoon that says "happiness is a warm puppy," and it's so true.
AOL: What do you think is the biggest thing we can learn from animals?
AC: Complete devotion and love. They don't discriminate against anybody. Anybody could walk into my apartment and my dog would jump up on them and love on them, whether they're an old person, young, black, white... they do not discriminate in their love, and there's something so pure and sweet about that.
AOL: Will we be seeing a sibling for Wacha any time soon?
AC: I don't want to mess up a good thing! I feel like when he gets much older I might, because I think that would keep him younger, to give him a buddy.
AOL: To switch gears a bit, how has your background in news influenced your career?
AC: Oh everything. Deadlines for writing — it made me fast and efficient, and a good writer. I make very quick decisions, which I had to do every day in the field and on deadline, and it informs me in the Edit Room when we have to make choices. I can look at a cut of Housewives and say "this isn't working," or "this works well" and switch things around.
AOL: Are there any new projects you're working on or most excited about?
AC: I'm excited about my book, which I have coming out in the fall! It's the sequel to the Andy Cohen Diaries, it's called Superficial: More Adventures in the Andy Cohen Diaries, and it's almost 2 years of my life. It's definitely dish-ier and I'm nervous about certain people seeing things that I've written ...
I just kept writing after I turned in my first book, and I realized that if I put out another one, I couldn't go halfway, it was going have to be more and dish-ier, and this one definitely is.
AOL: Amazing! Can you give us a taste?
There are going to be Housewives mad at me, some celebrities who I don't know but I've met who are mad at me ... yeah. My bookers for Watch What Happens Live are going to be mad at me, too!
AOL: What else can people do to help this great cause?
AC: Well there are millions of dogs in shelters, and a million ways to volunteer with shelters. And for this program, all you have to do is go to Purinaone.com/28-day-challenge and sign up for the 28 day challenge. You just have to sign up! And they will donate $10. So that's a really easy way to help, and it will take you 20 seconds!
By: Logan Sowa
Now, watch below to see Wacha adorably "interview" Andy: