Thursday, April 9, 2015

Scarlett Lillian & Rhett

Who is in the photo at right?

I'm Scarlett Lillian, a high school fashion senior photographer in Jacksonville, FL at Scarlett Lillian Seniors! My #poodlechild is Rhett. He's a male miniature poodle, and just turned 11 years old! He's even got his own Instagram account.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

We love walking nature trails, so we brewed a cup of coffee ahead of time to give us energy!

What's brewing?

Social Grounds. It's a local coffee company with a big heart whose mission is to use the sale of their coffee to empower people, specifically the homeless in our city. It's a great cause I love supporting with my morning cup!

Any treats for you or Rhett on this occasion?

He loves his Beggin' Strips!

How were you and Rhett united?

I went through a very hard heartbreak in my early 20s and told my parents, I needed to transfer my love to something else, and I was getting a puppy. They were a little shocked because they never felt I was a dog person before that, but getting Rhett healed my heart with the every day joy he brought into my life. I originally set out to get a Chihuahua like Elle Woods in Legally Blonde so I could carry him in my purse, and when I brought my mom back to a pet store where I found a Chihuahua, that dog was gone! So my mom and I walked around the store, and she said "How about this sweet looking poodle?" I said "Oh mom, poodles are so cliche!" But then he gave me those puppy dog eyes, and I picked him up and he turned on his back like a baby and just melted in my arms. Then another puppy tried to come up to play, and he growled at that puppy because he knew he had found his momma. And I knew from that moment on he was going home with me.

How did your dog get his name? Any aliases?

I was named after the movie Gone With The Wind and always thought it would be fun if I met a guy named Rhett, and I never did, so I loved naming my dog that in honor of the movie! Now we are Scarlett & Rhett just like in the movie. Even though I usually call him "Rhettster" for affection.

Does Rhett do more to help or hinder your photography?

Definitely help! When I was first starting out years ago, trying to learn the ins and out of my camera, he was my very first model! I have a whole book of all my test shots I used to take of him practicing all the settings. He was the best supermodel and loves to show off!

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Neither really. He's too nice, he doesn't chase other animals or people.

Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?

Definitely a tennis ball. We used to live next to a tennis court, and on our walks, 200 feet away, he would smell lost tennis balls in the bushes and dive in to find them with a victory every time. So we have a collection of about 100 lost tennis balls. He loves when I toss them and chasing them and bringing it back just close enough to play hard to get.

Who is Rhett's best pet-pal?

Definitely me. He's a momma boy for sure and born to be a lap dog. All. The. Time.

What is Rhett's best quality?

I never thought a dog could have so much personality, but he truly does. Every day he does something new to make my husband and I laugh.

If Rhett could change one thing about Florida, what would it be?

Fewer ticks. We recently went on a walk in a public nature trail and he got infested in hundreds of seed ticks! I had never heard of seed ticks before, but he looked like a poppyseed bagel! It scared me to death having to shave him down bald and pick them off one by one, but after rushing him to the vet, his wounds have healed and he's doing much better now, and you can believe I complained to the city of Jacksonville about needing to spray their public parks better after that scare.

If Rhett could answer only one question in English, what would you ask him?

Why do you lick your feet so much?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Rhett could speak, who should voice him?

My husband Stephen does a great "movie trailer voice", so I would probably love for my husband to do his voice. Ha!

What advice would Rhett give if asked?

The way I adore you, and love you, and make you my everything, keep loving God that way.

Visit the Scarlett Lillian Seniors website, Facebook page, and Instagram page, and check out Rhett's Instagram page.

--Marshal Zeringue


  1. Seed ticks? New one on me, too. I know that Scrappy is pretty good on his Sentinel, but we see one or two if we venture into tall grass.

  2. Oh, poor Rhett! I know how it feels when your paws are itchy. I used to lick and bite mine all the time when we lived in Kansas. My mommy said it was something called "allergies." My dogtor even used to poke me with steroid shots every spring because of allergies. Now that we are not in Kansas any more, I have completely stopped doing it. Thanks, mommy, for having us move out of that place! Rhett, I hope your mommy manages to find out what's bothering you, too. Woofs from Gage

  3. THANK YOU SOOOOO MUCH for the wonderful feature on my boy! He is truly my heart and we are both excited to have him showcased! Every one I have shown has loved the interview!