For the past 11 years, Bogie has been Gilbert's constant travel buddy. Photo by Eloisa Lopez, Reuters
Culture

This star aspin has been his human’s bike buddy, contest partner, life protector for 11 years

It’s a partnership like no other.  
ANCX Staff | Nov 30 2020

They say dogs adopt the lifestyle of their masters. It is certainly the case for aspin Bogie and his human Gilbert Galang. Gilbert is owner of a motor shop in Binakayan, a barangay in Kawit, Cavite. In the 11 years Bogie has been with him, the dog has learned to love biking and is his master’s biking partner. 

We chanced upon the duo in a recent video by the South China Morning Post. Bogie is looking spiffy in a pair of shades and an orange helmet, riding a motorcycle with Gilbert. It’s clear he’s become a bit of an expert at riding, balancing himself pretty well on the vehicle, his paws steady on the handlebars.

Gilbert says he really trained Bogie in the hobby. “Gaya ng ibang mga canine na trained sa pag sniff ng bomb, siya naman talagang naging expert na sa pagsakay sa motorsiklo,” he says. “Halos naikot na namin ang Pilipinas ng naka-motor.” He mentions Davao, Mindoro, Boracay, Bicol, the Luzon North Loop, as some of the areas they had explored together by bike.

The 45-year-old Gilbert got Bogie from a tiyangge in Bocaue for a hundred bucks. The dog was only about a couple of months old. Since then, the joy Bogie had brought Gilbert has been priceless. 

Gilbert with his two dogs, Kiko and Bogie

Gilbert started bringing Bogie with him to his rides when he was still a puppy, after the dog started running towards him every time he turns the bike engine on. “Nung una, kinakarga ko pa sya. Then nung mga 4 to 6 months na sya, nalulundag na nya mula flooring hanggang sa upuan ng motor. Doon na sya nauupo sa upuan ko,” shares Gilbert.

The biker discovered Bogie too likes adventure. In fact, they had joined the Iron Man Motorcycle Challenge together. “Yung 1,000 kilometers in 24 hours, nakukuha namin in 16 to 17 hours. Siya ang backride ko,” Gilbert tells ANCX.

On their beach trip to Boracay

Bogie is also his gym and running buddy. When Gilbert was still in the business of selling crabs, they would drive together to SM Mall of Asia at 5am to wait for the goods to arrive at 9am. While waiting, they would jog around (Bogie is not on a leash when they do this) and proceed to a nearby gym to kill time. “That was our routine before,” he shares. This training is also the reason why Bogie has developed a strong stamina, Gilbert says.

While Bogie is obviously not a show-me-your-tricks kind of dog—fine, he can crawl like a soldier and play dead—he’s definitely streetsmart. Don’t try anything foolish because Bogie is trained to attack an intruder. He automatically barks when someone goes near his human, and stops only when Gilbert tells him to keep quiet. Gilbert shares one instance when a rugby boy attempted to snatch his necklace. Bogie instinctively barked, scaring the boy away.

Traveling with Bogie allowed Gilbert to gain new friends. "Madami kasing gustong magpa-picture sa kanya," he says.

At his motor shop, the aspin helps attract customers. He’s game to have his photo taken garbed in his rider getup. Bogie, it seems, is a natural celebrity. He has appeared in some shows and in an Alpo commercial. “Lucky charm ko sya sa business,” shares Gilbert. “At dahil din sa kanya, madami akong nagiging kaibigan.”

As for himself, Gilbert says he found a son in Bogie. “Matuturing ko si Bogie isang anak,” he tells the South China Morning Post. After all, they’ve been together more than a decade now. “Mahirap nang isipin kung mawawala siya, papaano uli ako magsisimula?” he says to the media site. “Kasi sa dami ng napuntahan namin, adventure namin, wala na sigurong makakapalit pa ulit.”