They both moved back to New York last year, however we still get to enjoy seeing their adventures together through Elle's adorable instagram page.
This beautiful pair now get to travel the world together, and we spoke to Coco about how this loveable Frenchie has become her inspiration and muse on an exciting new project.
Tell us about Elle and how she came into your life.
Ten years ago, I was at a birthday party. One of my co-worker’s husbands started showing me photos of their French bulldog, Gerard. He was dressed for different holidays in hats and outfits, solo or with them. He started to apologise for showing me so many, but I was fascinated. I knew that when I was ready for a dog, I would go to them for advice. I did a lot of research on Frenchies after that. They were not even a top twenty breed at the time.
Four months later, a healthy tax return came in, so that’s when they connected me with the breeder, who had me fill out an application, as any responsible breeder should do.
Due to lifestyle and temperament, the breeder thought that of the two puppies she was ready to place, Elle would be best suited as a match. I drove out the weekend following my approval and reference checks and then came under a bridge that revealed a yard full of ten Frenchies playing in a group and spotted this tiny little puppy in the mix, holding her own. That was Elle. For one or two times, I used my finger to beckon her and she came right to me.
How does Elle fit into your general working day?
Elle wakes me up between 5-6am, so she starts my day as an alarm clock. Currently I work from home, but my last couple of consulting jobs she’s been able to come to the office with me. Usually at work, she’ll want to sit on my lap and she does wander around to find sunbeams and cuddles from other people. When I’m writing freelance articles, and the subjects are guides for cities, Elle is often my model, so she comes with me and is my muse. While I work at home at my desk, she is happy sleeping nearby.
When you’re not working, where do you and Elle like to hang out?
We love going on adventures. Long walks (1-2 miles), in London she loves Holland Park and Notting Hill the most. In Brooklyn, she likes to wander to Brooklyn Bridge Park and DUMBO. She likes to visit her favourite treat spots, then come up a hill to a dog park before getting a bath. She has a treat map in her mind of everywhere she’s ever gotten a treat. We also love going out to Long Island to visit family so she can run around and play fetch in yards. She takes sniffing and exploring very seriously.
What essentials do you always have on you when heading out for a dog walk, and what do you carry them in?
Definitely have to have poop bags. Sometimes I have one tied to a lead, but mostly I keep poop bag holders in my pocket. I don’t like attaching them to the lead because it makes it heavier and I’ve had wrist problems. If it’s a longer walk, also take a portable bowl, water and wipes. I fell over when we were in Hyde Park into goose poop, so wipes come in handy.
I usually have one or two accessories on me in a crossbody bag or in the pockets of my Barbour International wax jacket. I also love roaming with the Fetch & Follow long lead. I used it in Paris when I had a dog on either end, and it’s great for those long walks in parks or hands-free in cities.
If it’s hot, I make sure there’s a cooling vest and in New York, a dog bag. Currently, the Timbuk2 is very handy because you can clip it to the lead to secure them and open various windows, but it’s so much better to have a balanced distribution vs. over the shoulder.
What adventures do you and Elle have planned for the rest of the year?
Work-wise, I’m developing a brand that Elle is the inspiration, and there’s a product named for her coming along. We recently went to LA. It was bittersweet as she raced down to the plane thinking she was going to London and quite shocked to find herself in the sand and sun. We’ll get to The Hamptons a few more times this year. She turned nine in January, so I’m adjusting to what that means. We love exploring our New York and seeing what’s changed. We have a lot of friends coming to visit, and we’ll see what unfolds.
You can check out all of Coco and Elle's adventures together on Elle’s Instagram.