Over the years I’ve posted countless pictures of Boomer and Brody together in South Carolina and I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve told people the story of how they’ve come together, as they aren’t actually brothers. But, I think you’ll agree there is a serious bromance happening there and it’s present in absolutely every photo I’ve ever shared of them. I must admit, I’m mortified I’ve never written out this tale in its entirety, as it’s one that truly deserves to be told. In all honesty, it breaks my heart every time I think about it. Not only did we save Brody, Brody saved us. So, without further ado, this is the tale of the bromance of Boomer and Brody, but mostly the tale of how Brody came into our lives completely unexpectedly and it’s changed everything. It’s a celebration of sorts as next month it will be the five year anniversary of us becoming a family.
So this tale starts in the summer of 2013. In 2012 we lost our sweet Golden boy Bodey. This gets a bit confusing, name wise, so apologies. Bodey left us all too soon and my whole family went through a period of time thinking we may never own another dog again. It was all becoming a little too hard. We had said goodbye to two Goldens in the past decade in rather dramatic ways. For anyone that has ever owned a dog, you will know that losing a pup is like losing a small part of your heart. There is no pain like this pain. And when you have to make the decision to put them down, it takes a very long time to forgive yourself. If only there were a way we could explain why it was all happening. I think, until the day I die, the last looks my Goldens have given me will plague me. But, I have always been there to say goodbye as I believe that being an owner means being there from start to finish. That’s a tale for another time. This was supposed to be happy and I’m headed down completely the wrong path. It’s all really just to say that we were ready to move on with a dog-free life until one day the phone rang.
Bodey’s breeders had another litter of puppies coming and it was the same bloodline as our beloved Bodey. We had a chance to have a slice of the heavenly pup we had before. It seemed like fate. So, we registered our interest and come May 2013 there was a Golden Retriever puppy ready to be picked up in New Hampshire. Now, it should be said that we’ve almost always been a two dog family. Again, that’s a whole different story. But, this idea of just having one dog in the house was foreign in itself. We went up north to visit my grandparents and pick up Boomer and we were smitten from the moment we saw him. Of course he was sweet as pie when we brought him home. We flew the little devil first class from New Hampshire to the Carolinas and he was even allowed out of his carrier after a unanimous vote in First Class to let the fur ball out for cuddles with the passengers. I mean you just can’t write this stuff. The rest, as they say, is history. Boomer was spoiled from day one and certainly acts like it today, and very much acted like it in the early days. If you need proof, check out Boomer’s first video (currently at 2.6m views… all the attention has clearly gone to his head):
Now that we look back on it, something didn’t feel right in our family. Of course we were happy to have Boomer in our home, but he was an unholy terror. He was taught by the best obedience teachers, even went away to a bootcamp and still came back a diva that seemed to have no set of rules in this life. We are dog lovers so we just accepted that maybe this is what the future held for us – a crazy dog.
Then an email arrived. Yes, seems it’s always a message we’re picking up for these new members of our family. The email had a link to a Craig’s List posting that advertised a Golden Retriever for sale. First of all, this is illegal. You cannot sell dogs on Craig’s List. My mother knew this and wrote to the family posting the golden for sale to bring this to light. The family was a husband and wife pair with two daughters and my mother decided immediately to set herself a personal goal to get this family to keep their dog and wrote to offer assistance to the couple with the Golden. They had complained in the ad that he was too much for them to handle. Apparently the husband hated the dog. Don’t get me started on what kind of person it takes to actually “hate” a dog. My mom simply said she would hate to see two little girls lose their best friend. This is where things get a little strange and more facts get added to the story. Apparently the family was keeping the pup in a crate day and night and he was only being let out to eat and go to the bathroom. A couple of weeks went by of conversing back and forth and finally my mom, after becoming increasingly frustrated with the situation and upon hearing of the conditions this dog was living in, asked if she could please give him a new home. She just wanted him out of there as soon as possible. So, she suggested they bring their golden over to the house for an hour or two to meet Boomer and to see if they hit it off.
When the couple arrived, they opened the back of their car and out jumped a puppy, the same exact age as Boomer. As my mom puts it, “it was love at first sight.” Brody jumped out of the car and ran immediately over to Boomer and the two ran off into the sunset together. No, really, they ran off into an actual beautiful Lowcountry sunset on the property. This is movie worthy, people. An hour later, my mom called Brody’s owners and asked if he could stay the whole weekend. My parents swear that the first weekend they were together was worse than any slumber party I had ever thrown as a teenager. The two dogs wrestled with each other and played all night long until they were so exhausted they collapsed together on the dog bed. You couldn’t tell where one dog started and the other ended. They were one and that’s what it would become.
Brody, after 24 hours, was a part of our family. So, my mom entered into negotiations with this family to try and rescue Brody from his cage. Who buys a dog to keep him in a cage all day and all night? I honestly will never understand these people. The only way they would part with Brody would be for an exchange of cash. This poor dog had had no healthcare, wasn’t neutered and apparently was being kept “in tact” for breeding purposes. I still call bullshit on this. The owners also claimed he was a very special dog that came with all kinds of incredible paperwork that made him one of the most expensive Goldens to buy in the USA. Let’s just say we were in a tough situation. We are not a family that has ever been able to see a dog in anything less than ideal conditions (we’ve adopted a lot of strays over the years…our Heinz 57 dogs, as we used to call them). So we paid an undisclosed sum of money to make sure Brody would never have to be in that situation again. It was one of the best decisions we have ever made.
Of course all of this was happening while I was back in England. So I was hearing about all of this over the phone. The first time I “met” Brody was over webcam and I was instantly in love. Mom and Dad would send me videos of the two of them running around the yard and up and down the dock together and my heart was in pieces. We didn’t know it before that moment, but Brody was the missing link in our family. Things didn’t feel right because he hadn’t yet entered the picture.
Here are the pics of their first week together. Trouble from the very start….
Six months after Brody’s arrival, I was finally introduced in person. I came home and I was nervous. Ok, I know this will sound ridiculous to anyone that isn’t a dog person. I had always been the one that was usually there when a dog entered our lives, or I was the reason a dog was entering our lives (because I was the girl crying to her dad that we couldn’t possibly bring any found stray to the local shelter as they would be murdered… my poor obliging father). I’d never been in a situation when I was being introduced to a dog as a new family member. I’m going to be really honest here. Brody was not an easy dog to cuddle at first. It was obvious he had some scars from his former life. He seemed to have doubts about everyone and this was a complete surprise. He would never approach me and I knew I had to approach him with care. It was probably about two years before we reached a point where Brody would get really excited about me coming home from London. Now he goes nuts when I walk through the front door and smothers me with love and attention. Of course the love is mutual.
As I write this, I’m snuggled with both dogs. Boomer is asleep down the side of my leg with his head warming my feet and Brody is asleep against my upper body with his head across my chest. They are butt to butt, which is how they always sleep with me when I am home. We are a little unit, the Three Amigos, and I couldn’t be more thankful. Over the past couple of years the two have grown to love working with me and the camera, hence the reason you see them so often when I’m home. They love posing (although that could be because I incentivise them with treats). They love the adventures, the attention and I make it a daily habit to tell them they are adored around the world and bring joy to so many. And that, at the end of the day, is why I share them with you all. Each and every image shared is one that is dear to my heart and I sincerely hope it brings a smile to your face when you see this amazing friendship that was completely unexpected yet was always meant to be. There is a bromance here that is like no other…. so every time you see their picture, I’ll hope you remember this story. They are truly the cutest couple!
And now for a look back in time…. a highlight reel of their best moments captured on camera….