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A Dying Lab Takes an Instagram Road Trip Across America

Poh didn't have much time left, so his owner -- Thomas Neil Rodriguez, aka DJ Armstrong -- took him out to see America.

Michael Leaverton  |  Jun 1st 2015


Poh, a 15-year-old yellow Labrador, is facing the end of his life — his kidneys are failing, and he has tumors around his kidneys and liver. When his owner, Thomas Neil Rodriguez, got the news months ago, he wondered how best to use the time they had left together.

“The doctor told us it may only be a matter of days, so we thought we could stay home and wait for the inevitable, or we could go enjoy life as much as possible,” Rodriguez — also known as DJ Armstrong, who has toured with the likes of Jay Z — told People.

Rodriguez decided to go out and enjoy life — and that took the form of a cross country trip to the West Coast. They took their time, turning the drive into a road trip for the ages.

“I always wanted to bring Poh to the West Coast so he could swim in the Pacific Ocean,” Rodriguez said. “That turned into a seven-week trip. We ended up hitting 35 cities.”

Thirty-five cities, all documented on Instagram. Like this shot of Graceland:

Rodriguez has had Poh since the dog was just eight weeks old, having found him at North Shore Animal League in Long Island, New York. Rodriguez said that Poh was great on the trip. “Fortunately, he has no problem in the car,” Rodriguez told People. “By the end of the trip, we had figured out the right supplements to give him, the right meal to give him, and he loved it as far as I could tell.”

“During the trip, people would often say, ‘Oh, he looks tired, can he make it? Is it good for him?’ Every dog is different, every situation is different, but I think he loved it,” Rodriguez told People. “When we were on the road, of course he’d be tired – he’s old – but the second he got out of the car, he would go explore and want to see and smell things and be outside, instead of just lying down around somewhere.”

Here’s a mini-photo tour of the pair’s trip; you can get the whole thing over at Poh’s Big Adventure Instagram.

Called me hollywood Poh. Doing all the tourist spots. The Chinese theatre in la la land. #pohthedogsbigadventure

A photo posted by poh the dog (@pohthedogsbigadventure) on

If Portland is weird, then you can call me weirdo! I love it here ? #pohthedogsbigadventure

A photo posted by poh the dog (@pohthedogsbigadventure) on

My dad said that we were going to get donuts… Look at the size of that thing! I’m about to lose it #pohthedogsbigadventure A photo posted by poh the dog (@pohthedogsbigadventure) on

I made a friend today The Buffalo, states animal of Oklahoma #pohthedogsbigadventure

A photo posted by poh the dog (@pohthedogsbigadventure) on

Belly rubs on the grass at the National mall In dc. Now that’s what I call presidential treatment. A photo posted by poh the dog (@pohthedogsbigadventure) on

Via People; see more photos at Poh’s Big Adventure on Instagram.

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