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Adopting Bolivar


First of all, this was not Dana's idea. Sometimes fate just takes charge and that�s what happened in this situation. We were in La Paz, Bolivia exploring the city, on 5 de Mayo, when we happened upon a dog adopt-a-thon sponsored by Animales S.O.S. (This agency rounds up all the street dogs and tries to find them homes.) They had loads of dogs and puppies in these outdoor pens in bedraggled pink or blue ribbons waiting for someone to take them home. People were snapping up all the puppies and the pure-breed dogs. We were observing the goings on when the crew arrived with a cardboard box full of dozens of puppies. At the bottom of the barrel was a dog we named Bolivar, after local hero Simon Bolivar (and thereafter nicknamed Boli). He was so weak and scared and sickly no one bothered tying a ribbon on him. His fur was so dirty his matted tail was stuck to his leg and he could barely walk. It was a heartbreaking sight!

So, to make a long story short, we adopted him. On our way back to the hotel, Bolivar tried to jump through a glass window when he smelled food. He was starving. The first 3 days with Boli were spent bathing and grooming him until his puppy skin was pink and clean. On the day of adoption, every inch of the poor baby's body was packed with dead fleas and who knows what else. He had his first vet appointment where he was vaccinated and declared healthy, and he has been traveling with us every since. Following his adoption, Boli became an instant adventurer - he's traveled by bus through Bolivia, played with monkeys and otters at an animal rescue center, took a luxury bus from Bolivia to Chile, cruised the Pan-American Highway on a week-long road-trip from northern Chile to Santiago, hiked in the Andes mountains, and relaxed at a ski resort. He's now looking forward to heading to the USA and meeting his new relatives (particularly the canine ones).

Boli Pics! (click picture for full-sized version)

Can you see why we couldn't resist?

If only they could stay little forever...

Naughty and nice

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