Beau’s mother and Theo’s owner, 34-year-old Jessica Shyba, thought the boys’ snuggly naptime ritual was so sweet she couldn’t resist snapping a few photos as they slept. She never could have anticipated the attention those images would get, but the toddler and puppy pair went viral almost immediately after Shyba posted photos to her popular blog, Momma’s Gone City.
It seems the world can’t get enough of Beau and Theo. Shyba, Beau, and Theo have already appeared on the FOX News show Fox & Friends and have since been approached by The Ellen DeGeneres Show and The Queen Latifah Show.
The Shyba family adopted Theo, believed to be a Boxer–Labrador Retriever–German Shepherd mix, from the Santa Cruz Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) on November 4 after months of searching for the perfect canine companion. Though he’s only been a Shyba for a couple of weeks, his new family is already over the moon — especially little Beau.
When the Shybas brought Theo home, the little pup cried throughout the night. Used to sharing a kennel with his mother and nine littermates, 8-week-old Theo seemed afraid to be alone. Shyba initially brought the frightened pup to bed with her, but she soon realized the pup preferred a bedfellow much closer to his age: 23-month-old Beau.
“On his third day with us, Theo fell asleep on Beau and as I rocked him down for his afternoon nap. I was practically howling at the cuteness — and nearly woke them both up,” Shyba says.
“The following day, Theo met us up in my room for the nap time ritual,” Shyba describes on her blog, “and so began what I can describe as the most organic and beautiful friendship I have ever witnessed.”
“It makes my heart explode with joy,” the proud mama adds.
Inseparable from the get-go, Beau and Theo seemed to act like siblings from different species.
“The two of them have formed a bond immediately,” Shyba says of Beau and new puppy, Theo. “When they get closer to each other, they can sense each other’s presence. It really helps both of them sleep.”
Shyba plans to publish a book of Beau and Theo photos with all proceeds benefitting the Santa Cruz SPCA. The Santa Cruz, Calif.-based organization is hoping to expand and save more lives in the process by constructing a new $4.5 million shelter in nearby Live Oak, Cal., but the group is still more than $1 million short of their fundraising goal.
The SPCA is currently based out of a small 1,000-square-foot facility, but Shyba hopes the photos of Beau and Theo will help the group realize their dream of building the 8,400-square-foot they are planning. For now, before her book can be published, Shyba is raising awareness about the Santa Cruz SPCA on her blog.
Lisa Carter, Executive Director of the Santa Cruz SPCA, is grateful for Shyba’s support — and that the Shyba family decided to adopt rather than shop for their new four-legged friend.
“She is an amazing woman to expose the plight of homeless animals,” Carter tells the San Jose Mercury News. “I’m really happy that for her to have the option of going to a breeder or a shelter, she had the option to save a life and that is what she did.”