By: Garland Davis
I am called BO. I want you to know I wasn’t named for that glorified celebrity dog in Washington DC. My name is Beauregard, a fine old southern name. When I first came here, my kids, Jack and Jerry couldn’t say Beauregard. They called me Bo Bo which was later shortened to just Bo. I am a Jack Russell Terrier, or mostly. Although I look like a Jack Russell, I am a little larger and a little heavier. I think one of my ancestors engaged in some hanky-panky outside the pedigree. I don’t have registration papers. Dogs never put any stock in pedigrees and registration papers. That is something invented by you humans. We dogs judge each other by actions and the quality of a few rectal odors.
When Trevor and Donna, the parents of twin boys who were to become my two kids, first chose me from the farm where I was living with my mother and brothers and sister. I was still a puppy, but my mother had already started pushing me and my litter mates away. That’s another thing that I don’t understand about humans. You keep your kids around for years. The children usually break away from the parents instead of the parents kicking them out to fend for themselves. You even take them back when they fail. Dogs conveniently forget their mothers and their puppies.
You humans sure make a big deal of twins and triplets. I was whelped in a litter of six. But then, I’ve seen Donna without the coverings she wraps herself in. She doesn’t have the nipples to support more than two. In my litter, there were two extra nipples and we still fought over the better ones. How would human kids fight for a nipple? You don’t even have teeth when you are puppies. I sure had a lot to learn about people.
I was scared as Donna carried me away. But not too scared; she was warm and smelled nice. I didn’t know she was taking me to my two children. I settled into her lap as we drove away from the farm where I was born. Trevor and Donna were discussing whether I was a good idea. I didn’t understand exactly what they meant. I wondered who Jack and Jerry were as I drifted into a nap. I was awakened by Donna opening the car door. She carried me toward the door, then stopped and placed me in the grass. I smelled many new and alluring scents. This was an exciting place. I hoped that I could stay here. Memories of my past life were already beginning to dim. I took a pee. Donna, for some reason, found that exciting and told me what a great puppy I was. Yep, I think I am going to like it here.
Inside the house, there was a young woman there I heard them call Babysitter. Her real name is Amy. She reached over and rubbed behind my ears. Exquisite! But, the real treat was the two young male humans there. As their smell overwhelmed my senses, I thought my tail was going to wag off. I don’t seem to have control of that thing. Donna placed me on the floor and I walked toward the two boys. I was so excited that I leaked. Donna rushed to get a cloth and dry it up. After introductions, it was established that I was Bo Bo and they were Jack and Jerry. Donna told them that I was real and to treat me gently. She also told them that if they hurt me, I would bite them. She placed me on the floor and again cautioned them to be gentle. They reached out and let me smell their hands and then rubbed my head. It wasn’t long before we were rolling about the floor. I was barking and nipping at their fingers and they were scratching my head and back. Oh, the best time in the world! During the time, I leaked again and did the other thing. That got me a scolding from Trevor and a trip outside. I didn’t want to lose my two boys. I thought I was going to be left out there. After awhile he took me back to the boys and we prepared for bed.
Humans are strange. They sleep in separate beds. Jack and Jerry each had a bed and I discovered a bed between theirs for me. There was also a water dish for me to drink from. Trevor told me that I was a good, brave dog and that it was my job to protect Jack and Jerry. They turned the lights off and we each settled down. I awakened frequently to check on my boys. It was my job to protect them. I guess I cried during the night missing the warmth of my brothers and sister.
Donna awakened the boys and grabbed me and rushed outside and waited until I had relieved myself. She told me I was a good doggie and scratched that special place behind my ears. If they wanted me to do my stuff outside, I would. I did learn to control myself and to communicate with them until Trevor installed my very own door into the back yard. They had breakfast at the table and I had my very own bowl of puppy chow. I didn’t have to fight with other dogs for my share.
There were also tasty items that the boys slipped to me from their plates.
I learned during the next few days that Jack and Jerry were almost four years old. We spent the whole summer playing in the yard and the edge of the woods at the back of the house. We were watched closely by Donna or a lady called Nanny. The boys talked of kindergarten soon. I thought that was a great new game. Kindergarten wasn’t a game. It was long hours of loneliness. The boys left each morning, leaving me to watch out the window for their return. Donna drove them in the car on her way to work, whatever that means. Nanny didn’t come when the boys went to kindergarten. I waited throughout the long days.
Eventually, another summer came and kindergarten ended. We played in the yard and woods. We ran and jumped. And then another year of Kindergarten came and went. We had another wonderful summer. I was sure glad that kindergarten was a thing of the past. Then I learned that its place would be taken by something called first grade and we would be separated again. The good thing was that first grade was four blocks from the house and the boys could walk. I snuck out and went with them. When we got to the place where first grade lived, they told me to go home. I resisted, but they scolded and said they would lock me up tomorrow. I slowly walked home. I went back to my position of looking out the window. I saw them coming from first grade. I rushed out my door and ran to meet them, telling them loudly that I was so happy they came home.
The next morning, I led them to first grade. I learned that it was also called school. I waited again and as the time approached for them to come home, I decided to go get them. They might get lost trying to find the way home. I went through my door and started toward the school. I was almost to the school when I saw them come through the gate. I ran to greet them and proudly led them home. About half way between home and school there was a house with a big chain link fence and a locked gate. I was barking for the boys to hurry so we could play, when I heard a low growl and a bark from the fenced yard. There were two big dogs behind that fence. They were yelling at me and my boys. I yelled back. That seemed to make them angrier. I later learned that they were named Buster and Behemoth and they were Pit Bull mix, whatever that means. I was glad that the fence was there.
As we walked to and from school each day, Buster and Behemoth learned our schedule were waiting each day to yell at us. They would throw themselves at the fence and gate until the chain link rattled. I sometimes yelled back at them. Jack and Jerry were afraid of them and cautioned me against barking.
First grade ended and there was another summer of playing. Now that the boys were older, they were permitted to go into the woods. We had great times running through the woods and swimming in the creek. It was the best summer ever. Only to be ended by something called second grade. I suffered through another school year. I guided the boys to and from school. Every day we were yelled at by Buster and Behemoth. They seemed to get angrier and angrier as the days passed.
Second grade ended and we played through another glorious summer. But, as I expected, it was interrupted by a thing called third grade. About a week after school started, I went to the school to get the boys. They were rushing and laughing on the way home. I was running circles around them and barking. Buster and Behemoth were especially angry today and were throwing themselves against the gate. We were about a block from home when I heard a loud metal noise. Looking back, I saw the chain link gate lying in the street. Buster and Behemoth came through the opening and stood looking toward us as if they couldn’t believe they were free.
I yelled for the boys to run and started nipping at their heels. They looked and saw the other two dogs and ran. Buster and Behemoth realizing that nothing was between them and the subjects of two years hatred started running our way. I saw they would overtake us about eight paces from the gate to our house. I yelled for the boys to run.
I turned back to meet Buster and Behemoth. They weren’t going to get my boys!
Authors Note: The idea and impetus for this story came from:
Tiny terrier sacrifices its life to save five children from pit bulls
Last updated at 18:16 02 May 2007
A plucky foot-high Jack Russell terrier named George saved five New Zealand children from two marauding pit bulls but was so severely mauled in the fight he had to be destroyed, according to his devastated owner.
George was playing with the group of children as they returned home from buying sweets at a neighborhood shop in the small North Island town of Manaia last Sunday when the two pit bulls appeared and lunged toward them, his owner Allan Gay said.
“George was brave – he took them on and he’s not even a foot high,” Gay told The Associated Press. “He jumped in on them, he tried to keep them off.
“If it wasn’t for George, those kids would have copped it