The Toronto PR girl and her Rottie-Shepherd cross, Lolita
By The Get Leashed Doggy Style Team
Sara greets us at the front door of her downtown home and by her petite stature and small, graceful frame, we half expect a teacup Chihuahua to come trotting out when she calls “Come, Lolita!”
…as it turns out, our guess could not have been more wrong.
Because Lolita is not a small dog at all, but rather a 135-pound Rottweiler-German Shepherd cross, whose bounding energy and gregarious nature juxtaposes almost humorously against that of her mom’s, outweighing her by about 30 pounds. At first glance, you can’t help but wonder what would possess a tiny woman to have such a big dog but from the first wet lick to the face the sweet mutt greets you with, you realize Lolita is a gentle, giant puddle of love, and it all starts to make sense.
The Toronto-based PR and marketing darling, whose socially infused professional life is spent dialed into the worlds of fashion, sports, and the urban music scene, took a break from her busy and diverse work schedule to take Get Leashed on a tour of her local hood.
PLEASE TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF:
My life basically revolves around two priorities: my work and my dog. To be general, I typically categorize myself as specializing in marketing and business development, but over the years, I have consulted for a plethora of businesses and industries. For the last few, I’ve worked in PR with I Luv Lola Media Group where my projects have ranged from being Greivis Vasquez’s publicist throughout his career as Point-Guard for the Raptors, to producing concerts, managing in-store meet & greets and coordinating club appearances for big names in hip hop and R&B like Ty Dolla $ign and Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Kehlani.
At the moment, my main projects include heading the overall PR and branding for Runway Luxe, and launching Girl Connected with I Luv Lola, which is a membership-based foundation/organization that provides support for young women who work in predominantly male-dominated industries. On the side, I’ve been working on rebranding a real estate office’s website and marketing strategy, and have recently partnered up with a friend to start our company, CitySmart Solutions, which specializes in commercial cleaning and painting for high-rises and commercial/ industrial properties.
A BIT ABOUT YOUR LIFE WITH LOLITA:
My typical day basically involves me getting up and taking Lolita out for a walk. Because I’m lucky enough to work mostly from home, I usually grab my coffee on my way back from walking her and prepare to park myself in front of my laptop for a few hours and either have my partner or clients come over throughout the day, or I end up popping out sporadically for meetings and site visits. When I can’t be home for an afternoon stroll with her, I have an amazing walker through Gussy and Co. that takes her out for an hour in the afternoon so she can run with a pack of five mostly small and medium dogs. It’s actually quite funny because they switched her from the big dog pack to the small dog pack ‘cause she’s so gentle.
Growing up, I always had small dogs and valued their portability… until the day an ex-boyfriend got a Rottweiler and I fell in love with the breed. My previous pet had just passed away and as I was cruising the Internet for puppies one night, I came across an ad for her and knew she was the one. In hindsight, I definitely didn’t think I’d be coming home with a dog that would grow to outweigh me; I definitely had my reservations about taking such a massive dog home and there were certainly a couple of “OMG what did I do?” moments throughout the first 24 hours but before I knew it, the four-month-old Rottie-Shepherd was all mine, and I could no longer imagine life without her.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?
My style can pretty much be summed up in two categories: super cozy, or dressed up. The cozy obviously comes into play because I work from home, so I’m usually hair up and in a hoodie and sweatpants. When I need to get it together and look presentable, I’m fortunate enough that my best friend is president of Runway Luxe, so there are many late-night, after-hours visits to the Queen West store to keep my wardrobe on point. Overall, I’d describe my style as Manhattan, with a bit of street edge.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE LOOK AND FEEL OF YOUR HOME?
Like my own style, I try to make sure my home is super cozy – particularly because I work from home and host a lot of meetings, and love to entertain friends. In terms of design inspiration, there are definitely a lot of fashion and French-inspired pieces like my Versailles chandelier portrait, vintage Louis Vuitton trunk and collection of table-top books. I also do my best to have fresh flowers throughout the year to keep things lively inside.
DESCRIBE YOUR IDEAL WEEKEND:
My ideal weekend would definitely include heading up north with Lolita – anywhere with water because her favorite thing to do is swim, and it’s nice to escape the bustle any chance we get.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
My grandmother’s strength, the freedom and the luxury to work for myself and not have to answer to anyone, and some of the amazing, driven women I’m always around, like Lola Plaku who I work with, and my best friend of over 10 years, Erica Phelan.
FINALLY, CAN YOU LEAVE US WITH A FUNNY STORY ABOUT LIFE WITH LOLITA?
A few weeks ago, I was trying to put drops in her ear, which she absolutely hates. She jumped on the couch and literally tried to squeeze behind one of my friends to hide behind them. When I was finally able to pull her out, she sat in front of me and punch-licked me in the eye with her snout to get away. We thought it was an accident the first time – until she proceeded to do it again a couple minutes later and she realized it was an effective way to delay the dreaded ear drop. She was literally fighting back! Without question, she definitely packs a good punch because my eye was irritated for the next two months!
Overall, she’s just super cute, gentle and nurturing – when you’re not trying to put things in her ears.
You can follow Sara on instagram @saratalegani for more shots of Miss Lolita!