It’s a running joke in our house that Bogart is the true definition of a photographer’s dog. AKA- he NEVER wants to look directly at my camera. For his 10th birthday last week, I had to wait until Jason got home from work because I knew trying to take his photos alone would never work. If you can picture me with my camera and Jason behind me with a toy, waving it around and making high pitched noises to get our dog to look at us- then you have a glimpse into the behind-the-scenes in the making of the following photos…
In all seriousness, Jason and I feel so lucky that we get to celebrate another birthday with him! For those who may not know, we fostered Bogart when he was 5 months old and he was a service dog in training. One of our friends had told us about an amazing organization in Xenia, Ohio called 4 Paws for Ability that provides children with service dogs and how they desperately needed puppy raisers. We looked into it and decided that we would love to play a small part in helping a child get a service dog! We fostered Bogart for almost six months and he went everywhere with us! He went to college classes, movie theaters, grocery stores, malls– you name it, Bogart probably went there! Our main goal of puppy raising was to get him acclimated to different scenarios and people and have him be comfortable no matter where he was. Even though we knew going into this that we would fall for whatever dog we fostered, we didn’t know how difficult it would be the day we took him back for his advanced training months later.
Fast forward to June 6th 2011, (my birthday of all days!) I received an email from the organization that unfortunately after doing an x-ray of Bogart’s hips, they found he had mild hip dysplasia. That meant that he was no longer eligible to become a service dog and that we had the first chance to adopt him. We cried and couldn’t believe it because he truly was like our baby and we couldn’t believe he was going to come back to us! We told them we would be down to get him the next day!
We truly hit the jackpot when it comes to dogs. Bogart is truly the sweetest, gentlest soul. If you’ve ever met him, then you know what I’m talking about! He has never barked, growled, or made much noise at all– besides the occasional snores. He continues to bring so much joy to our lives and we love him so much!!
Another fun fact: While Bogart was at his advanced training, we fostered another lab through 4 Paws and I’m happy to say that she completed her training and is now a seizure alert dog for a family in Michigan. We were able to meet the family and it was truly an incredible moment- one that we’ll never forget!
Please enjoy the following photos of our sweet boy!!