CHOCOLATE PEANUT was a nickname for my chocolate labrador, Zoey. She was my inspiration for the site 18 years ago. After graduating from college in 1989, I moved to Washington, DC to start a new journey. In the spring of 1990, I brought my handful of chocolate from North Carolina (where I’m from) to DC where we would be navigating big city life together. I used to take her everywhere—the farmers market, cafés, dog parks, and a few dog-friendly stores. She loved dragging me everywhere, but it was jogging our favorite routes in Georgetown, along the Potomac and the monuments, or Connecticut Avenue where she and I were in sync together.
As she grew older, her health was precarious. I did everything possible to keep my Peanut with me just one more day, and I’m convinced that I did. I dodged lumps and bumps that weren’t always benign, seizures of the worst kind, and whatever medical emergency there was, I conquered them, but I couldn’t win the battle against a failing heart. She died in my arms of congestive heart failure the day before Thanksgiving 2002. She was 12 years young.
My father’s words comforted me in that I was chosen to be with her—a gift. She was always being photographed, and after one release of the shutter, she would walk off of the set dragging props and lights with her. She appears on the cover of a photo-documentary on animal-assisted therapy that I published in 2000. She was truly a testament of the therapeutic value a dog can give. Her exuberence for life amazed me, and now I’m blessed with the spirit of her memory. She wore a knitted cap like no one else. This site is dedicated to her.
“We are excited to bring you the next generation of chocolatepeanut.com. Offering the best in creature comfort, we create original apparel for dogs, and fun accessories and graphic tees for people. We are currently working on our Comfy line which will include scarves, sweaters, and blankets. Our Happy Camper line boasts a little fun on your outdoor adventures. Stay tuned!”
Our models on the site are Betty and her brother Miles—both French bulldogs—and little Aggie the Pug.