The 80 year old wasn’t even planning this path his retired life took, but it was something that started as necessary due to the cruelty and apathy of people around him. He and his brother lived owned a horse barn on a dead end street, where people would “sometimes come dump their dogs here, leaving them to starve,” Bostick said to the Dodo. “We let them in, fed them, and took them to get spayed and neutered… we made them a home, for all intents and purposes.”
But he didn’t stop there. Even though the dogs had plenty of room to run and play, he wanted to do more. He wanted them to be able to go out and about. He was struck by inspiration seeing a tractor with attached carts for pulling rocks on the street. An experienced welder, “I thought, Damn, that would good to take the dogs out,’” he later recounted. “I found these barrels and cut holes in them, added wheels and tied them together.”
And thus was born the Canine Caboose.
Right now, a few times a week, Bostick can be seen with the nine dogs in his care driving slowly up and down the safest streets around town, or the forest around his home. Even to a small creek in the custom caboose to allow the once abandoned pets to have not only a little security, but some freedom, as well.
Says Bostick: “When they hear the tractor starting up, man, they get excited. They literally run and jump in. They’re ready to go.” Fun for the dogs, he continues to say, but fun for him, as well. He’s become a local celebrity, of sorts. People come up and ask to take pictures of what is an act of kindness that comes without strings.
The only question is: how long will he keep it up? How long can he keep the Canine Caboose running, providing a bit of fun for animals that were so easily disposed of by their owners before finding a bit of nirvana in an old horse barn from a retiree?
“I’m getting up in age. I’m 80 now, so I can’t last too much longer,” Bostick says easily enough, “but I’ll keep it going as long as possible. They (the dogs) have a great time. They just enjoy it.” Just another example that no matter what age or situation…kindness always brings the best of people out to the forefront, and a singular example goes a long way in how we treat not only our pets, but each other.
For the love of animals. Pass it on.
What do you think?