ATF K9 named Bo beats cancer

COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KTRK) -- Bo, an ATF explosives detection canine, has a fan club.

On Tuesday, he was getting ready for a photo shoot at Texas A&M. He's being featured in one of the university's magazines.

"If there's any canine deserving of this recognition, it's him," said ATF Special Agent Eduardo Ramirez, Bo's handler.

Ramirez and Bo made a trip from the Brownsville area to College Station for a special visit for the magazine and photo shoot.

It's been quite a journey for Bo. He's been with the ATF since 2013 and has had an impressive career. He and Ramirez were on the front lines in the Austin bomber case, where they've tracked down criminals in numerous cases in homicides, drug cases and situations involving explosives.

But, six months ago, something wasn't right. Bo kept coughing, so his handler took him to the vet.

"We actually took an X-ray of his chest area and that's when we discovered, unfortunately, he was suffering from a tumor on his left lung," said Ramirez.

Bo made regular trips from the Brownsville area to A&M, where he received treatment.

"I like to say that my car already drives up here in auto pilot," said Ramirez.

Around the same time, Stacy LeBlanc was visiting A&M with a friend and got an idea.

"I'm very passionate about A&M and I like to give, and I have a passion for law enforcement," said Stacy LeBlanc, who is the founder of Help for K-9 Heroes Fund.

She wanted to give back and came up with a fund that will help dogs like Bo.

"The Help for K-9 Fund covers emergency, or specialty services, and anytime you attach emergency or specialty to veterinary services, you have dollar signs," said LeBlanc.

The fund was launched last fall. Around the same time, Bo finished his chemotherapy treatments after his tumor was removed.

"What we worry about with an aggressive tumor is kind of the microscopic disease that is left behind, and circulating cells that can turn into a new tumor somewhere else," said A&M Oncology Technician Supervisor Jaci Christensen.

He came back last month and his CT scan showed he was cancer free. He got back to work two weeks ago.

Now, Bo and the Help for K-9 Heroes Fund are making headlines with the good they're spreading.

If you'd like to donate to the fund you can visit this website.

Follow Marla Carter on Facebook and Twitter.
Copyright © 2020 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.