Eric Dane Reveals Secret to Happy Marriage: Work

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Grey's Anatomy star Eric Dane plays Dr. Mark "McSteamy" Sloan, a drop-dead gorgeous, smooth-talking surgeon with an eye for a lot of women, to say the least.

In real life, though, the 36-year-old Dane has been happily married to actress Rebecca Gayheart for four years, and the actor, who stars opposite Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston in the new movie Marley & Me, says he's figured out the secret to wedded bliss.

"Work. And it's worth it," he tells Parade.

"I'm 36 and I've found that anything worth having is work. It takes a lot of work to keep your marriage on track but I think it's incredibly rewarding too."

Rebecca Gayheart, Eric Dane

Eric Dane and Rebecca Gayheart, a.k.a. Mr. and Mrs. McSteamy.

Dane, who prefers to think of "McSteamy," his Grey's Anatomy character, not as a womanizer but as a "careerist who just likes women," says he still has a couple of single friends. But Eric tends not to understand them as well as he'd like.

"I have a couple of single friends, and their willingness to stay single baffles me," Eric Dane said. "Some of the issues they have with some of the women they date are so just insignificant to me but so monumental to them. I don't get it."

In Marley & Me, Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston play a couple who adopt what turns out to be the world's most unruly dog. Has Dane himself ever owned a dog?

"I've actually adopted a dog but it was a fluke," he recalls. "I was walking down the street in L.A. and there was this little Chihuahua with a broken leg."

"This girl told me that someone had thrown the dog out of a moving car, so I took it and nursed it back to health. My wife thought I was the sweetest guy in the world for taking that dog in until I told her she had to take care of it."

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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Grey's Anatomy Quotes

MEREDITH: "You don't get to call me a whore. When I met you, I thought I had found the person that I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I was done! All the boys and all the bars and all the obvious daddy issues, who cares? I was done. You left me. You chose Addison. I'm all glued back together now. I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke. You don't get to call me a whore."
DEREK: "This thing with us is finished. It's over."
MEREDITH: "Finally."
DEREK: "Yeah, it's done."
MEREDITH: "It is done."

Did you say it? 'I love you. I don't ever want to live without you. You changed my life.' Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it, but every now and then, look around; Drink it in 'cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow."

Meredith (closing voiceover)