03/30/2010 at 05:16 PM EDT
Life isn't as easy as it seems for socialite Tinsley Mortimer. Though the reality starlet spends her days designing for Japanese handbag company Samantha Thavasa and hits the Manhattan social circuit by night, she's currently going through a tough divorce – one that includes dogs. "I haven't had them for a month and it's been horrible," she tells PEOPLE. "They're my babies."
Those babies are "fat Chihuahuas" Bella and BeBe, who now split their time between the New York City apartments of Motimer and her soon-to-be-ex-husband, Topper. "We have joint custody of the dogs," she explains. "We do month to month."
The perky pups are regulars on the starlet's CW show High Society
, which tracks her adventures in and around the Big Apple. "I already get negative press," she says. "I want people to know the real me." So when she's not running out the door in the early hours to dash to meetings and interviews, viewers see Mortimer curling up with Bella and BeBe. "If I get a chance to have nothing to do, I'll ... just hang around at home with my dogs, watch TV and check fun stuff on the Internet," she says. "And unwind!" For more on Mortimer, check out the April 5 issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now.Meet more reality-star pets on PEOPLEPets.com:American Idol's Paige Miles Loves Singing and Rescuing Dogs!VIDEO: The Second Love of Kara DioGuardi's Life? Her Pooch Tiki