AJ Quadarella is a sophomore psychology major at Wilkes who lives in Reamstown, Pa. Although having to stay at home during the pandemic hasn’t been ideal, her collie, Bella, has helped to liven things up. OK, so she might interrupt Zoom class lectures and discussions, but what’s a dog to do? As AJ will tell you: “She’s spoiled, an attention seeker, a big cuddle bug, and I love her.”
Name, age and breed of dog: Bella is a two-year-old collie
Does your dog have any special training?
She has no special training other than what we at home have given her. She can do the basics: Sit, shake, lie down, and high five. But she has taught herself to let us know when she needs to go out. My mom loves Christmas, so much that she keeps plastic snowflakes hanging on our back door at all times. Bella has learned to use her nose to jostle the snowflakes around to make noise. My mom is afraid of her snowflakes breaking, so she panics and lets Bella outside.
How did you come up with your dog’s name?
When we got her, she was called Star, just to let the shelter know which puppy was which. The puppies weren’t taught any names yet, since they were just shy of eight weeks old. I originally wanted to call her Luna to keep with the space theme, but my mom was set on Bella. Argument ensued, and we eventually compromised. On her vet documentation, her first name is Bella, and her middle name is Luna.
What is your dog’s favorite treat?
Bella’s favorite treat is whatever you’re eating. She’s a vacuum, she’ll eat anything. Literally anything. We’ve had her for almost three years and we haven’t found anything she doesn’t eat. She brings small twigs inside and chews on them. If you give it to her, she’ll eat it.
What is her favorite activity?
Her favorite thing to do is be incredibly obnoxious. She makes a lot of noise, growling, whining, and barking. She has zero concept of personal space, so if my family is sitting on the couch, she will be cuddled up next to someone, sometimes purposefully laying on top of someone to block their view of our television. I knew collies were smart, but this is ridiculous.
How is your dog helping you while studying at home during the pandemic?
Honestly, Bella isn’t the type of dog who’s helpful. She’s very mischievous, and sometimes downright naughty. She’s a very vocal dog, so she likes to make her presence known. If I’m on a Zoom call, she’ll start growling and making a bunch of noise so I can’t hear anything anyone is saying. With recorded lectures, same thing. She runs my household; what she says, goes. She’s spoiled, an attention seeker, a big cuddle bug, and I love her.