Team USA soccer stars explain why their dogs are MVPs

At home, Rose Lavelle and Andi Sullivan have MVPs: Most Valuable Pups.

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Team USA stars Rose Lavelle and Andi Sullivan may dominate the soccer field, but at home their dogs Wilma Jean Wrinkles and Coupa are the MVPs: Most Valuable Pups.

Lavelle and Sullivan opened up recently about the profound love their dogs, Wilma Jean Wrinkles and Coupa, bring into their lives, along with the significance of pet rescuing.



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Team USA is team dog, all the way

Rose Lavelle’s beloved companion, Wilma Jean Wrinkles, is a 10-year-old English bulldog.

When coming up with a unique name for her dog, Lavelle says the name Wilma Jean Wrinkles came to her effortlessly, rolling off her tongue.

“I feel like with bulldogs, you have to have a good name for them,” she says.

On the other hand, Andi Sullivan’s energetic dog Coupa was named after a cherished cafe from her college days with her husband, Drew.

Sullivan describes her as “muscular, dense, snuggly and energetic.”

Despite not understanding the importance of personal space and boundaries, Coupa’s affection is one of Andi and Drew's favorite things about her.

When Sullivan is not at home and away from Coupa, she says she’s always calling Drew on Facetime to check on her, even though most of the time she’s somewhere laying around taking a nap.

According to Drew, Sullivan likes to see Coupa on Facetime more than him. “I can talk to him but I can’t tell Coupa that I love her,” she jokes.

When it comes to being a dog owner, Lavelle believes it’s the most beautiful love there is.

“It’s just like the most genuine, happiest love,” she says. “Dogs are the greatest.”

The power of adoption

Sullivan, who rescued Coupa from an animal shelter, encourages others to consider adopting and emphasizes various ways to contribute and help at your local shelter.

For those not looking to fully commit to adopting a dog, volunteering, donating, fundraising and fostering are other options.

Sullivan believes that providing a home to a pet, even if it’s temporary, can make a significant difference in their lives.

“If you can’t fully adopt, maybe you can help dogs find a temporary home until they find their forever home,” says Sullivan.

“Everyone deserves a home where they feel loved and safe.”

Andi Sullivan, USWNT

To learn more about how you can help your local animal shelter and rescues, visit ASPCA and

The Miami-Dade Pet Adoption and Protection Center has an average capacity to house 250 pets. Right now, the shelter has the difficult task of providing shelter, food and medical care to more than 600 dogs and cats who are desperately awaiting adoption.
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