The face of Bo


This is the story all about how our lives got flipped-turned upside down… It has nothing really to do with Doctor Who, except you gotta admit, it’s a cool coincidence. The Face of Boe on Doctor Who isn’t what you’d call pretty, but oh so interesting and full of wisdom and stories and stuff. And spoilers, but you can Google that stuff. The face of Bo is pretty darn interesting itself, and yes, wise as well.

Anyway, Bo, the dog that is, came to live with us “for a week or so” a couple of months ago. My friend Nicole is a dog-fostering wonder, but she had something like five dogs in her house at the time, and needed a hand you see. Truth is, I’d seen this dog’s picture, and sort of fell for him. I’m a sucker for a hard-luck story. Bo had been in the shelter for a while, and the staff adored him, but nobody would even consider him because of his face. He had a skin condition as a pup, lots of Prednisone and stuff, and his face is full of scars. I call it character. Some people assumed he was a fighting dog, which is laughable once you meet him. But even when the staff at the Franklin County shelter told people this was the best dog for them, they wanted no part of the little guy (okay, “little” is relative, he’s about 50lbs now, but short).

John and I (my husband John, the bass player for the Stone Age Romeos and dog fanatic), well we’d been sort of planning to maybe foster a dog or so in August. His son is going off to college, and we figured it’d be less chaotic that way. Still, that face… So I posted that sweet face on my Facebook (which, you know, is where you should post faces, right?), and nobody adopted him even though he was on Death Row and so sweet! Then Nic asked for a volunteer to take him for a week while she cleared her house of some dogs (she is fast at getting them good homes!). We knew this was all part of her evil plan to drag us into the foster world, but oooh, that FACE! We filled out paperwork with 2PawsUp, a great foster organization in the Raleigh area, and got ready for our week of Bo.

At the pound, John texted me pictures of the dog on his lap. I was at work, wishing I was there, but I knew he was in love. I’ve seen that look before. He brought Bo home to our two dogs, and realized that the one little problem (Bo was NOT neutered!) was not so little… Bo was pretty fond of sniffing our female hound doggie Misha, and while she was thrilled to have a new playmate, this did not go over well with her Alpha self. There was also the spraying our door-frame thing, which, you know, is at least better with dogs than cats, but still not a pleasant habit. At our urging, his surgery was scheduled within days. We prayed this would fix the few trouble spots, because he really is a super sweet dog!

And hooray! His sniffing/humping problem went away almost entirely, and in a day or two he was romping with Misha in his Cone of Shame, happy as, well, happy as a dog rescued from Death Row could be I suppose! Anyway, Nicole stayed in close touch, and gave me great advice on how to “whore him out” to potential owners. We took him everywhere, and I told his story many times, and people loved him, but they never called. I brought him to an adoption event for foster dogs, but everyone there was fostering or full already it seemed, serious dog people tend to do that…

Anyway, John and I have one of those relationships where neither of us wants to be the boss, so we end up waiting for the other one to say something, and we try to be agreeable but we end up bickering over those weird gaps in conversations. It’s pretty normal from what I see out there. So we’d have these conversations…

Me: So… I mean, he really is a great dog. What if…
John: I know, he’s so awesome. But if we kept him, we couldn’t save any other dogs. I want to save all the dogs I can.
Me: Sigh. I know, you’re right. We got into this to help as much as we can.
John: Sigh.  

So yeah, that. Plus the taunting of friends and family who will tell you eagerly they KNEW we were going to keep this dog. I hate you people. No, not really, sheesh. But it did make it hard for two stubborn people to admit “defeat” and just take the damn dog, you know. A week or so ago, we finally managed to admit it to one another out loud, but I knew John was still feeling a little defeated, so I posted this on his Facebook wall:


The Likes poured in, and that was that. And yes, people are still hollering the “I told you so”s at us, but what the heck, they’re right, they really DID tell us so. And John did in fact make this his profile picture, and Bo has a fancy new collar and tag, and hey, a very happy family to go with his glorious face.



  1. Becky Hingtgen

    Great story! Sounds very similar to our own foster failure, Casey. He came to us from Texas after having bladder surgery for stones. He was adopted and returned to us a week later, because it was determined he needed another surgery. He spent months with us recovering and we just couldn’t let him go. He’s sound asleep by my side as I type.

    1. it's nothing, really

      That’s so sweet! I’m glad you still have him and he has you!


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