Many know John Oliver as his famous role of a brash comedian on The Daily Show, and now on his own show, Last Week Tonight. Greatly famous (or notorious, depending on how you look at it) for tearing apart Dr. Oz after his court case over the ‘magic diet pill’, it would seem that even though what he said is true, it might be a little bit on the harsh side.
Yet, despite John Oliver’s unique TV show persona, it’s becoming easier and easier to see that he and his character are not necessarily the same person. is not necessarily who he is. At least, if he was that person, everything changed when his wife, Kate, brought home a golden lab mix who was fondly named after her favorite sandwiches. Though the only pet he’d ever had before was a goldfish when he was seven years old, and the concept up being responsible for any living creature terrified him, bringing home that little puppy was the best thing that Kate could’ve ever done for him.
According to Oliver, the first night that Hoagie spent in their home was terrifying for her, so he laid down on the floor next to her and spent the night trying to make her feel better. “I promise everything is going to be okay,” he said. “I’m going to try as hard as I can to make everything all right.” This compassionate, empathetic person may not sound a lot like the John Oliver we’ve been seeing on his new show, Last Week Tonight, but it seems like bringing Hoagie into his life turned out exactly how people expected it to.
When people close to him were asked why Oliver got the dog, an ongoing joke was that it was to ‘humanize him’. And Oliver admits that despite the fact that the initial statement was a joke; the end result is actually true. “The problem is, Jim is kinda right; she would fundamentally humanize me. So I can’t really do my job when she’s around. It would bring up too much compassion whenever she is around. I can’t have that. When I interview someone, I can’t have any kind of humanity inside of me.”
Though Oliver works quite hard to avoid having Hoagie affect his ‘on-stage presence’, it seems that her being a part of his life has already begun to teach him some valuable life lessons, such as how be a good manager of his staff. ‘Getting a dog is like dipping your toe in the waters of responsibility,” Oliver explained. “I’m more aware of when people need to go to the bathroom and when they need to be stroked.“