‘RHOBH’: Thom Filicia From ‘Queer Eye’ Has the Inside Scoop Behind ‘Puppygate’

Leave it to Thom Filicia from the original Queer Eye to have the underground tea on the infamous “puppygate” from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

Kyle Richards and Thom Filicia
Kyle Richards and Thom Filicia | Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank

Filicia got the scoop when he did Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen and Kyle Richards from RHOBH was a co-guest. “I was on with Kyle and everyone loves Kyle,” Filicia recounted on the Behind the Velvet Rope with David Yontef podcast.

“So I was super excited to meet her,” he recalled. “Because I thought she was going to be this amazing person and so great. And I watched the episodes and I have to say her husband’s like, I love him. He seems like a really great guy. And a great dad and he’s kind of hunky. I’ve actually seen him at Aspen with his daughters. You know, because I’m a big skier. But I have to say, I didn’t think she was super savvy. Because I couldn’t believe that she bought this story about the dog.”

Did Dorit Kemsley get the dog for a storyline?

“Puppygate” occurred last season on RHOBH. Dorit Kemsley adopted a dog from Lisa Vanderpump’s rescue, however, the dog didn’t gel with Kemsley’s family. Rather than return the dog to the rescue, Kemsley found a person who agreed to adopt the dog. Unfortunately, the dog, named Lucy, ended up in a shelter. Vanderpump retrieved the dog and was unhappy with Kemsley.

Vanderpump was then accused of planting stories in the press painting Kemsley to be a bad dog owner. The cast divided with nearly everyone against Vanderpump, insisting she lied about planting the stories. Vanderpump left the series after that season.

Lisa Vanderpump, Dorit Kemsley
Lisa Vanderpump, Dorit Kemsley |Isabella Vosmikova/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank

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“The interesting thing about that dog, which I can’t believe I’m talking about it because I couldn’t believe how boring the whole thing was,” Filicia said. “But Dorit and her husband, I think she just wanted that dog because it was like a good storyline. And she got the dog and they don’t really want a dog.”

‘Puppygate’ was over $5,000?

“And so what I found out behind the scenes, which was not talked about on Watch What Happens Live is that what was posed to me was that,” he added. “And I don’t even want to repeat how it was said because I think it was one of the tackiest things anyone has ever said to me.”

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“But what it was, it was about how it was $5,000 to return the dog to [Vanderpump Dogs] you know, shelter or whatever,” he said. “So to avoid the $5,000, that’s the real reason that the dog was put where it was put, but no one wanted to talk about that on television.”

Was $5,000 too much to spend for Kemsley?

“I don’t know if that was ever talked about, but I do know in the green room behind that, I was told, ‘Look, I’m rich, but $5,000 is $5,000.’ And I was like, ‘We’re talking about a dog. We’re not talking about a house plant.’ You know what I mean?” Filicia said. “And if you sign a contract, just follow the rules, you know, and it’s like they all live very excessive lifestyles and I’m just like, I’m sure $5,000 is a dinner.”

THE REAL HOUSEWIVES OF BEVERLY HILLS — Pictured: (l-r) Lisa Vanderpump, Dorit Kemsley, Kyle Richards — (Photo by: Nicole Weingart/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank)

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“So just do the right thing,” he said. “Be an elegant person. Step up to the plate and you know, be real. So I was just kind of like, huh?” Filicia added, “They said ‘I can’t believe that she was trying to be kind of difficult about this.’ And I was like, actually, she was kind of nice about it on camera, but like I said, but apparently, she was defending Dorit at this time.”