Who is in the photo at right?
My name’s Susanna Zachary and I am the owner-designer of SysterLi. I make handcrafted bohemian clothing for dogs. My mini doxie’s name is Ripley and she’s 3 years old.
What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?
We just picked up some more fabric for ponchos and decided it would be nice to answer these questions on my laptop in the sun and away from the house and distractions.
Today is a Chai Tea Latte kind of day. I found a new print for the Azalea & Oliver line we’re developing for SysterLi, all with repetitive animal prints, and it reminded me of something out of a Parisian child’s closet. For some reason I always drink chai tea lattes and Sangrias when I’m in Paris.
Any treats for you or Ripley on this occasion?
We share a banana.
How were you and Ripley united?
My husband Justin and I got her right before we got married, 3 ½ years ago. She wore a bow tie in our wedding.
Your Doxie Pool Pawty is getting famous. Is it going to be an annual event?
Is that what people want? Haha, yes, we’ve been getting a lot of requests to bring the event back as soon as possible. We were the first to throw a dachshund only pool party in the Hollywood Hills, so this thing is an entirely new species that we’re exploring and learning from. The response so far has been nothing but wonderful – so, yes, it would be heartbreaking not to bring the event back next year. Even as early as Spring.
Does Ripley have any corporate duties at SysterLi, your handcrafted dogwear company?
Ripley has demanded that she’d be the face of SysterLi. And we of course couldn’t say no. She is the most pleasant model I’ve ever worked with! I try to take her with me as often as I can, to restaurants and cafes, and grab a few stills of her in her ponchos and bandanas. There are so many inspiring places in Los Angeles. I’m drawn to the native, bohemian spots that serve eclectic food and drinks. I’m a sucker for hot sauces so naturally you’ll find me at places like Gracias Madre in WeHo who have one of the most beautiful outdoor seating plus they love canines.
Cat, postman, squirrel...?
Squirrels all the way. We have a couple of avocado trees in our garden and Ripley goes absolutely nuts when she hears the little creatures nibbling away.
Ball, squeaky-toy, stick...?
Mini tennis balls with a squeaky-toy inside; right hand on the sewing machine; left hand tossing tennis balls all day.
Who is Ripley's best pet-pal?
Her best friend is a large grey cat named Kubrick, who we sometimes babysit.
What is Ripley's best quality?
She’s a loving cuddle buddy.
If Ripley could change one thing about Californians, what would it be?
To slow down and enjoy the better things in life such as giving kisses, eating, playing and taking loooooong naps. To enjoy each moment. Oh, and less traffic. “I get so twaumatized when there are so many cars on the stweeets” – she says.
If Ripley could answer only one question in English, what would you ask her?
I love you, do you love me? Imagine hearing her say the words, “I love you.”
If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Ripley could speak, who should voice her?
My husband is an actor and he has developed his own unique puppy language with her. Hence her speech impediment. “Who is a fuzzy whittle wazzzy little pooo pooo> youzeee izzzzz.”
What advice would Ripley give if asked?
When in doubt, hide under a blanket and reappear when you’re ready or when there’s food around.
Visit the SysterLi website, Facebook page, and Twitter perch, and check out photos from the Doxie Pool Pawty.