By Dustin Fitzharris
Carla Collins is honored to be dubbed the “Canadian Tina Fey.” In her native country, you name it, she’s done it—weather anchor, radio and talk show host, soap opera actress, standup comedian, and star of her own reality show, “Carlawood.” In 2007, Collins and her husband, Ty Powers, moved to Los Angeles to live the Hollywood dream. While she hasn’t hosted “Saturday Night Live” yet, she has recently written her first book, Angels, Vampires & Douche Bags. And though making people laugh is important to Collins, it’s second to her love for dogs. Collins rescued Miles, as a puppy from the Bark Avenue Shelter in downtown Los Angeles. After testing his DNA it was discovered he is mostly a Chihuahua/Great Dane mix. However, Collins calls him the “Thai hooker of dogs”—meaning he is anything you want him to be! Dr. Zira, a Chihuahua/Miniature Pincher mix named after the female chimp in “Planet of the Apes,” is Collins’ first small dog. When Collins and Powers first saw Dr. Zira at a local adoption event, she was just skin and bones, and scheduled to be put down the next day. Today she’s a healthy, free-spirit, who Collins says is a “bit of a brat, but extremely cute and loving.” We caught up with Collins to get the inside scoop on what happens with her doggies when the lights go out.
Tails: Do they hog the pillow?
Carla Collins: Miles can’t get close enough. Sometimes I’m like, “Would you like to get in my pajamas?” He will adjust and re-adjust. He likes to spoon. Zira, I call her the crotch Chihuahua. She is always on my crotch or behind my knees. She likes to be under the covers. She’s never near the pillow.
Do they steal the covers?
Yes. Ty will tell you that they are big cover stealers. Maybe it’s a male thing, but when Ty leaves, Miles goes right to his spot. He’s like, “I’m the man!”
So, do they like to sleep under or over the covers?
Zira is under. Miles … (suddenly he perks up and his tail starts moving like crazy.) He is usually over, but I notice he’ll go under.
What kind of bedtime rituals do they go through?
I always let them out. They get their treats, and as soon as they hear, “Time for bed,” they race upstairs to get their spot.
Are they early risers or do they sleep in?
Miles wakes me up every day. He’s getting better if I say, “Come on, Miles, just a few more minutes.” Then he just lies on top of me in a Superman pose (two front paws all stretched out) until I get up. He’s got some moves. It used to be a 6am military wake-up call. Now we’ve moved to 7 or 8 o’clock. Zira likes to sleep in.
What’s the best part of sleeping with them?
I’m a big cuddler. I just feel like it’s our whole family in the bed. I know some people find that whacked. I think you can divide the world into people who allow pets on the bed and those who don’t. My old dog, Buster, was the first dog I ever had on my own. He always used to sleep on the floor near the bed when I first got him. I remember when I started to date my ex, that’s when Buster was like, “I don’t know who this is, but I’m getting up in the bed!” I love the idea. I just feel like that’s where they belong. It’s just so cozy.
Is there a downside, like hair on the sheets?
There’s hair, but big deal. It’s a small price to pay. You should be changing your sheets all the time anyway! I think it depends on your background. I had a very loving, touchy-feely family. We do make jokes when we make love. Ty always says, “They watch me. They judge me.” Then he’s like, “Honestly, the dogs have to leave now.”
For more on Carla Collins, visit CarlaCollins.com