Just days after wrapping production on the long running sitcom, Beatrice, the french bulldog who played Stella on ABC’s Modern Family, has passed away. Her cause of death is unknown, according to The Blast.
The beloved canine was introduced in a season two episode that depicted patriarch Jay Pritchett (Ed O’Neill) coming into ownership of Stella, albeit reluctantly. Another french bulldog, Brigitte, played the pooch for two seasons before the series brought on Beatrice in season four.
Beatrice was represented by Good Dog Animals, the same agency of other various TV family dogs, including Bean (Audio on This Is Us) and Lincoln (three legged terrier Chewie on Better Things). Her owners Guin and Steve Solomon spoke to blog Bodie on the Road in 2017 about Beatrice, then age 7, and her role on the show. The pair noted O’Neill was “in love with her,” elaborating that it was “very easy working with him because he brings Beatrice treats like popcorn and always looks out for her… in between takes he’ll say, ‘Would you please get Beatrice an umbrella, she’s in the sun!'”
The news is especially tragic considering the cast’s love for the frenchie who accompanied them on set for over seven years. The Solomons noted in their previous interview that “the crew loves to play with her when she’s out and about because she’s so fun and clowny. She really is one of the family!” Jesse Tyler Ferguson (Mitchell Pritchett) even tweeted out a message to honor Beatrice following the news.
— Jesse Tyler Ferguson (@jessetyler) March 15, 2020
The series wrapped Feb. 21 following eleven seasons on air. Premiering in Sep. 2009, Modern Family has received favorable reviews from critics for over a decade, having won 22 Emmy Awards since its debut.
To see how the series wraps up Stella’s arc (in addition to those of its human characters), Modern Family‘s two-part series finale will air April 8.