Adopt-A-Month Happy Tails: Bo’s Story

In 1992 Lisa and I adopted our first rescue, Bo, from a shelter in Albany, NY. Bo holds, and will always hold, a very special...


In 1992 Lisa and I adopted our first rescue, Bo, from a shelter in Albany, NY. Bo holds, and will always hold, a very special place in our hearts.

He has been a wonderful companion over the last 16 years, and is proof that adopting a shelter dog really can rock your world. He’s definitely rocked ours, on more than one occasion.

n 2006 I wrote a book about Bo, to give to Lisa as a Christmas gift. I wanted to give her something to memorialize Bo’s life, something she could cherish long after Bo was no longer with the family. The book was written through Bo’s eyes about the adventures the family had with him over the past 14 plus years.

Lisa enjoyed it so much that she found Bo a literary agent. Finally a canine with an agent! The upcoming book is titled Unleashed: Memoirs of a Man’s Best Friend , it’s being published by Kensington Books and is slated for a fall 09 release.

To kickoff the American Humane’s Adopt-A-Month here’s a happy tail about life with a rescue.


We met back in the early 90’s, December of 92 to be exact. I just had a major blowout with my first, somewhat dysfunctional family and decided that it was best for all if I just left. My foster dad gave me a ride to nowhere that ended up at a boarding house in Albany, NY. The place was great, warm with plenty of company, and their cheesy poof biscuits were to die for. On the downside, it was loud and smelly, not unlike me.

Even a lowly pug could smell her coming from miles away. It was Monday, as I recall, and the bells on the door jingled to announce her arrival. She was a beautiful blonde with a quick smile and a big heart. We’d seen this type before; they usually left with one of the pure bred puppies, but something was different about this one. My instincts told me that any canine would be darn lucky to go home with a dame like her, so I made it my top priority to be that hound.

She wandered back to where we lived. Frankly, I was a bit embarrassed about the condition of the place. Some of my cage mates were not very clean and some even took to pooping where they ate. My next cage neighbor’s lack of etiquette was particularly noteworthy as he took to eating kitty snickers (that’s slang for cat poo in the big house) openly. Sure they taste good, but you’re not getting adopted if you’re seen eating one.

As she came closer to my humble accommodations, I tried everything I could to grab her attention. When she finally got to me I made direct eye contact with her, angled my head at a 45 degree tilt and gave her my trademark BoPaw’ reach. As a bonus, my head as a pup was fully-grown, although my body wasn’t. While it would have been abnormal on any other dog, my oversized cranium actually made me cuter.

With the paw in the air and the bobble head turned just so, I stared into her eyes. I could see instantly she wanted me. Needed me. Had to have me. Hey who wouldn’t?

With her finely manicured nails, she reached out and petted me. She was clearly enjoying our encounter. How easy these humans are to manipulate, I thought. Her hands were refreshingly cool and her smell put me in a state of delight. I was in love. I could tell she loved me too.

After a few gushing, “He’s so cute!” comments, she took her hand out of my cage, gave me one last look and proceeded to move on to Pumpkin’s cage.

What?? Move on?! Hey, we just made a connection. You can’t move on. But that’s exactly what she did.

Realizing I was still sitting there with a half-cocked head and a paw in the air, I felt my muzzle glow red hot under my furry face as the other dogs chuckled with delight. After a few minutes I got my bearings back, but by then she had moved through the room, out the door and out of my life.

The story is a bit long, so go grab your leash and run on over to Bo Knows: He Just Doesn’t Listen to finish.

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