Cam’s perfect couple
TV executive Cam Sorell’s seven- year- old poodle Iris has always been queen of the household – even when Cam and his wife Peta decided to give her some company in the form of three- year- old shihtzu Percy.
What characteristics of poodles are you drawn to?
Peta and I have always loved dogs and we have owned a couple of poodles. I like dogs that need plenty of exercise because I like to exercise, however, I won’t take Percy for a walk because I don’t want to be mistaken for walking a guinea pig along Sandy Bay Rd. We both love that poodles are non- shedding and very intelligent.
How do Iris and Percy get along?
Well, when we got Percy three years ago he was so small Iris mistook him for a tennis ball and would occasionally pick him up in her mouth.
Not too much has changed. Iris is defi nitely the boss and poor Percy even has to make way for our Siamese cat, Clyde. If Clyde saunters up to the fireplace and Percy is lying in front of it, Percy will get straight up to make room.
A poodle and a shihtzu make for a fairly intimidating combination of watchdogs…
Surprisingly, they’re very good watchdogs – and they don’t mind barking when the occasion arises. But they are both very well- behaved dogs, as opposed to previous ones we’ve owned.
Before Iris and Percy we owned a schnauzer, Arthur, who was a serial kleptomaniac – especially at Christmas time. Once, when we weren’t home, he got outside and stole a neighbour’s plum pudding that was hanging off a tree to dry. By the time our neighbour chased him back into our yard, he had eaten it all.
A couple of days later we found someone’s Christmas ham in the back yard. He was just bad.
What’s great about having Iris and Percy?
They’re more than just pets. I think they’re very attune to people’s feelings.
Iris can sense if people come around and aren’t big animal lovers – she’ll jump on them and almost bully them.
Peta says all her friends think Iris looks through them, not just at them.