Rhody Pets: But First, Lois

Bachelor Sweethearts – turned-cafe owners on how their pup prepared them for life with a baby…

Hey Rhody: By Belinda Jones, Animal Rescue Rhode Island

Life is sweet for Ashley Iaconetti Haibon and Jared Haibon. The two met on Bachelor in Paradise, the ABC spinoff of its popular dating and relationship reality television se- ries, The Bachelor. Jared was a cast member on The Bachelorette and Ashley was on The Bachelor. Now married, the Haibons are the proud owners of a newly opened day-to-night coffee house and lounge, and recently wel- comed baby boy Dawson. As these Rhode Is- land-based lovebirds reveal, they already felt like parents to a very special fur baby.

Sitting fireside at their venue, Audrey’s Coffee House & Lounge at South County Commons, the celebrity couple sip their fa- vorite drinks: an espresso martini for Jared and a vanilla chai for Ashley. The pair look smitten as they gaze at the wall canvas of their Pomeranian Shih Tzu mix Lois, and there seems little doubt who would get their rose.

“It all began when I stopped to pet a woman’s dog at the mall and formed an instant friend- ship,” Ashley explains of how Lois entered their world. “A week later, the woman called and said a little, fluffy, white dog had been dropped off at a local Petco because the owner was unable to take care of her, so I went straight there.”

“I had no idea that Ashley was going to look at the dog. I thought she was getting her nails done,” Jared laughs. “When I went to pick her up, she had a six-month-old puppy in her arms!”

Lois is now three and a half but she made a great first impression. “She was so playful and spunky with such an expressive face; even her ears have so much life in them,” says Ashley.

“Contrastingly, she sleeps hard,” Jared adds with a chuckle. “When I take her out for her goodnight walk, I have to pick her up and she’s all dead weight. Once she gets comfy, she doesn’t like to move.”

“I love watching Jared cradle Lois and sing to her until she falls asleep in his arms. It’s so sweet to see how safe she feels with him and clearly demonstrated to me how nurturing a dad he was going to be. I feel the same way when he plays catch with her or chases her around – they’re both at their happiest in those moments.”

The couple refer to Lois as “daughter,” so how is she taking to having a very human baby brother? “Initially I thought she’d hate it because he’s going to steal so much attention away from her,” Jared admits. “But all through the pregnancy she was lov- ing Ashley’s tummy – cuddling up next to it overnight so we were confident she would be protective and loving and she is.”

Of course, the couple’s other baby is their cafe, a lifelong dream fulfilled. Monday nights are The Bachelor Watch Parties and though dogs are not allowed inside, you can always get a Puppuccino to go!


South Kingstown • @audreyscoffeelounge