Model and actress Angie Everhart lives life large so it's no wonder she chose a Bernese mountain dog as a family pet. The star of the 2004 ABC reality competition “Celebrity Mole” (in which she was the mole), got 5-year-old Duke when he was just a 10-week-old puppy and her now 6-year-old son Kayden was just a baby. Since then, their family has grown, but Duke loves everyone, including Everhart’s husband Cal Ferro (the president and co-founder of meal delivery service Sunfare), his 9-year-old daughter JoAnn and their golden retriever Quimby.

The Akron, Ohio-native – who survived a 2013 thyroid cancer battle – may be most recognized from the pages of Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue and Playboy, or from roles in films like “Last Action Hero,” “Tales from the Crypt Presents: Bordello of Blood” and “Another 9 ½ Weeks.” Now, at 46 years old, the ravishing redhead will next appear in the thriller “Anathema,” which filmed last year in Chattanooga, Tenn., and Dalton, Ga., according to the Daily Citizen, and is set to be released later this year.

Find out why the 5' 10" stunner chose Duke in the special Headlines & Global News interview below!

HNGN: Tell everyone about Duke.
Everhart: Duke is a Bernese mountain dog. I found him at a place in Washington, D.C., and flew to get him. He was 10 weeks when I got him. His mother was Best of Breed at the Westminster dog show, so he comes from a very good line – he’s a champion line dog!

In the past, you had smaller dogs. Why get a large one now?
Yes, I’d always had small dogs, but when my son Kayden was a baby, he’d play very rough with them. It broke my heart, but I had to give my white Maltese terrier and wiener dogs to a family with a little girl because I was so worried that he’d really hurt them. We were both really sad, but he was young and just didn’t know how to play with them properly. No matter how much I tried to teach him, he just didn’t understand. So I wanted to find a dog he couldn’t possibly hurt, and one that had a nice temperament. I hate to name drop, but Robert De Niro has an autistic child, and I happened to be at his place one day, and his child was all over this dog. It was a Bernese mountain dog – just the nicest dog [who] played so well with his child. He said they’re the best dogs ever, and that’s why I got one.

How did you know you were making the right choice with Duke?
The breeder told me she was giving me the best male of the litter. The place was full of dogs, and I was assured I got the one with the best temperament. He did this move where he took his paw and just kind of held it. He still does it to this day – it’s his move and it’s adorable. It crushes me every time he does it – he’s just so cute! I’m completely crazy about him! To me, he’s just regal. He sits with his feet crossed and his head raised. He’s so handsome – the supermodel of dogs! I actually wanted to breed him because he is so good-looking, but I didn’t have time, so I ended up having to get him fixed. I’ve had a lot of dogs, but he’s definitely one of my favorites.

Anything special about this dog that you didn’t know from previously owning smaller breeds?
I did some research, found the breeder, and was advised they’re good dogs, but don’t leave them outside. They are inside dogs and need to be inside with the family all the time. They bond with one person; he is my guy. Obviously they bond with the whole family, but they have their [special] person. Everything the breeder told me was exactly the truth. He even hugs me – he puts his head in my lap and will put his paw around me.

How was Duke when you were going through your bout with thyroid cancer?
He knew when I was sick. He’s usually not far from me and, while I was recovering, he never left my bedside.

For more on Angie Everhart, visit her official website or follow her on social media (Facebook, Instagram or Twitter).