Brad’s first post on his dog Bosco, who he had to put down at the age of 15 at the end of May.
Early listeners of #JayMohrSports may remember my grandparents from me picking them up from a month long cruise and not being able to tweet the show one day in March, 2013. Don and Betty have both passed on since that wonderful day. 15 years ago, in late July, 2001, they got a cute little poodle puppy. One day at work, around lunch time, I took a friend to see the puppy. On the way back to work, she looked over at me and said, “Brad, you need a dog.”
When you’re a 30 year old guy, you tend to be pretty receptive to any suggestion from a pretty girl sitting in the passenger seat of your shiny new Mustang GT. She could have said, “Brad, you need to rob a bank,” and I’d probably have pulled up at a Washington Mutual. But I was also hit with a realization of responsibility. I’d had dogs growing up, and I knew the joy, the work, and the heartbreak of having pets. In an instant, I went from reacting to a suggestion to accepting everything that would come with it, and being more than ok with a big change to come.
Fifteen minutes later, we were at the Mission Viejo Animal Shelter and saw a 12 week old Boxer mix puppy named Bosco. He was standing atop a large dog carrier in his private cell, trying to slide down to greet us. As he slid down, we got the rear view of his large puppy balls jiggling around. He was friendly and affectionate from behind the bars, and I knew that I not only needed a dog, but that I’d found the one I wanted.
You wouldn’t believe how competitive the process is for adopting a dog from a shelter like Mission Viejo. You have a better chance of winning the lottery than being chosen to take home a puppy. Bosco could not be released to a new home for week. He had to be neutered, and any previous owner was given time to claim him. In that time, I brought friends a neighbors to see him every evening, making sure the staff knew that we visited and that they heard how great a human being I was at the time. I took pictures with a nice digital camera I had (kinda rare in that era), and created a little web site to share his story.
At the end of the week on Friday morning, I got a call from the shelter saying that I didn’t get to adopt Bosco. I was their second choice, finishing behind a family that had a large yard and another dog. They asked if I’d still like to be the backup, and of course I said yes. But I was disappointed, even sad, that I’d fallen short. Later that afternoon, I got another call, this time saying that first place family’s dog didn’t like Bosco, and asking if I was still interested. Still at work, I teared up a little. I’d be able to pick him up in the morning.
I went to PetsMart that evening and bought everything I could think of to make Bosco comfortable in his new home. Collar, leash, harness, tags, puppy food, dog bowls, elevated stand, blankets for the car, blankets for home, a dog bed, nail clippers, dog shampoo, a dog toothbrush, and more.
We were home late Saturday morning, and got to work on walking, house training, and getting to know each other. That night, he slept on his new dog bed downstairs, in front of my favorite reclining chair. And I slept on the floor next to him.
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