END OF  WATCH. Tribute to K9 Bosse

Bosse joined my family shortly after 9-11. His whole life was dedicated to search and rescue. He would work relentlessly for his 'hottie doggie' rewards. He was always hungry and has eaten anything from cans of sardines to whole cakes, roasts, and ear phones. One time, as a recently certified puppy, he came back to base from a missing person mission and promptly jumped up on the food truck table and gulped three donuts IN FRONT of the incident commander and two deputies (I had to tearfully swear them to secrecy - for fear the K9 team would fire us for the infraction).
I made all my mistakes learning how to train a SAR dog on Bosse and he was always totally forgiving, patient and willing to try things on - fearless. He trusted me unequivocally - didn't hesitate doing low hover exits from helicopters into my arms on missions, being belayed and doing rappels on our climbs in the Pacific Northwest mountains, sleeping in snow caves - in horrid stormy conditions- and much, much more. Never doubting me. Never!
As he retired from active search work he helped train numerous new dog handlers-always happy, always trusting I had his back. 
At the age of 8 he had major back surgery from an injury on a mission. Dr Sanders, who performed the surgery, told me just the other day he is still being featured in case studies at national conferences - as he pioneered a new surgical technique. It obviously worked - he was active in SAR until the age of 13 and attended his last training just a couple of weeks ago 3 weeks shy of 16 (keeping folks company and getting loved on at base).
Bosse took hour long sniffing hikes with his pack until just very recently - Scott totally came through for him during his last months. His nose never stopped working - always made me wonder what it would be like to be inside his vomeronasal organ - we can only guess, marvel and be honored to share their space - it is the closest I have come to having symbiosis with another species. We summitted Mt Dickerman just last year - an annual hike with over 4000 feet of elevation gain and the most amazing views at the top. His pack - Scott, Keb and I will spread some of his ashes there when the time is right. We will be celebrating his life with a BBQ on his sixteenth birthday August 20. He would have wanted a party with lots of hot dogs and happy stories.
We lived through huge challenges and became a solid SAR team  against all odds. We fought for our existence together, cried together, laughed together, learnt together, celebrated together and I am so grateful for the many years we have had and all I learnt about unconditional love. We were a team. Bosse, will always be our true blue boy. You rocked and changed our world. You saved lives. God boy, good boy!
Vi ses senare. Sov så sött tills dess och dröm om varm korv.
Forever your spiritual guardians. Free dog!
Suzanne and Scott

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