Seasons Magazines

Seasons Magazines

Much Ado About Romeo and Juliet, According to Bulldogs

By Renee DiNino  / Photography by Monica and David Fusco


Monica and David Fusco established on their first date that they were dog people. Not just any dog people, but bulldog people. It was agreed that when they would get their pups, David would name the girls and Monica would name the boys. After they married on June 6, 2011, the pair soon welcomed Chunk and Darla. Chunk was the childhood dream name of Monica while Darla was named by her husband after the childhood classic “Our Gang” show. “When I was a child, I had posters on my bedroom wall of bulldogs! I was about 9-years old and saw a poster of bulldog puppies and fell in love. I picked the name Chunk for my future first pup at that very moment,” said Monica.


Her parents encouraged her love of the breed, but she would have to wait until she had her own home to have one. Chunk and Darla lived amazing lives until the age of 13, which is unusually long for the breed. Chunk passed away first and Darla passed a few weeks later; it was suspected she passed of a broken heart as they were inseparable like Romeo and Juliet. They both passed in 2019 and the couple was heartbroken. Monica’s mother was the one who found Romeo, and it was quite emotional. In fact, Monica remembers being a bit upset people were trying to find her more pups. “We were devastated. We needed time to heal. Chunk and Darla were like our children,” Monica explained.


That concept might be harder to understand or relate to unless you have had pets, Monica explained. A pet’s love is unconditional and ever present; when it goes missing from the home, there is an absolute quiet that is not calming or peaceful. It feels lonely. Monica’s mother had an intuition and continued to show them the pups. “Well, that didn’t last long. I saw a picture of the little pup and he won my heart,” said Monica. In seven weeks on October 20, 2019, he would be coming home. She looked at his face and named him Romeo from just the photo. Juliet would be paired with her Romeo in January 2020.


Monica started tinkering with social media during the pandemic. She started posing pictures of Romeo, and then Juliet. People just ate it up, declared Monica. And so the social media life of Romeo and Juliet was born; it soon turned viral on TikTok, Facebook and Instagram at It started with simple photos and then moved to promoting certain causes. “Like wearing orange to prevent bullying, then blue for world autism day with Bully Squads. Other people who have bulldogs would band together to form social groups and share fun photos and common interests and causes,” said Monica. Then, of course, dressing for holidays became huge. The public started to follow and demand more from Romeo and Juliet. Even the social media platforms began to offer “influencer”-type deals for the pair.

Other organizations and businesses took notice like Bessie & Barney Beds, clothing company Spark Paws, and various other businesses wanting to be a part of her unique photo shoots and videos, which also included video parodies inspired from current headlines and movies. The viral video of the Romeo and Juliet as holiday toy soldiers was when Monica noticed that people started liking, sharing and reposting in the thousands.


“In fact, I didn’t think it came out as well as it could have. But then people went nuts over it,” Monica exclaimed. Another one that went viral was the “Top Gun: Maverick” shoot where Romeo and Juliet were dressed as pilots. It was inspired by watching “Top Gun” over a hundred times in her life, and she and her husband being excited for “Maverick.” “I had this idea and a cardboard box. We made the plane, painted it in three days! You never know what’s going to work, but people loved this!”


The two do, in fact, have their own bedroom and quite a costume and fashion wardrobe built by David— who is also their set builder. Sundays are usually the days Monica and David come up with their video shoots. “These two have more clothes and costumes than the two of us combined,” Monica mentioned with a giggle. How do the pups react to all of this excitement? They do it for their favorite treat: cheddar cheese bites. It usually takes longer to plan and build than the actual filming, which is about 5-10 minutes, and then it’s back to being fun silly pups.


Romeo and Juliet are bonded together and inseparable pup mates. They’re never been apart except for weekend mornings when Romeo and Monica grab breakfast while David and Juliet sleep in. This family is devoted to each other, and the couple couldn’t imagine their lives without the patter of paws. Romeo and Juliet have provided so much joy to so many. Monica receives notes from people all over who say, “thank you, we look forward to your videos” or how much the pups have brightened their day. Monica’s parents call the pups movie stars. “It’s just an outpouring of love from the public, and it keeps me happy to know we can share that,” Monica added. “I like to laugh. We like to laugh and share through Romeo and Juliet. And they have fun. We have fun! We’re fun people and it’s amazing to share a bit of happiness with all!”


In a world where the headlines can seem overwhelming, take a break and enjoy the whimsical, loving and fun content of these two pups, Romeo and Juliet. Know they are loved not only by their dog parents, but from people around the world too.