Bailey Esterhuizen leads a charmed life.
He dresses to the nines‚ dines on the finest cuisine and hits the road on the back of a BMW motorbike when the whim tempts him.
Five months ago Bailey’s future was uncertain.
But today the one-year-old Yorkshire terrier‚ who is a rescue dog‚ is an Internet celebrity and the apple of Bloemfontein businessman Lucky Esterhuizen’s eye.
Johannesburg resident Izette Soine was holidaying in the Western Cape town of George recently when she managed to capture video footage of Bailey and Esterhuizen cruising the streets. She first spotted the hound in Knysna.
The video of a goggle-wearing Bailey riding on the back of Esterhuizen’s bike in a modified cooler bag‚ has thrilled social media users and gone viral.
“We were on our way home to Kempton Park when we spotted them again in George‚” said Soine.
“Ag it was cutest thing. Those little goggles were adorable.”
Soine didn’t expect the video to go viral: “I’ve been getting messages from all over the world …. There are obviously lots of people who love cute dogs as much as I do.”
A proud Esterhuizen told TMG Digital that Soine had captured them on their first holiday together.
“I put my bike on a trailer and we drove down to Knysna. Bailey goes everywhere with me‚ he comes to work with me‚ the local pub and on long drives.”
Esterhuizen‚ 58‚ reluctantly decided to “foster” Bailey after a friend convinced him that he was a “top dog”.
“My friend has a farm where she keeps rescue dogs. I was reluctant to take Bailey because I thought having a dog would restrict my movement.”
Bailey quickly stole Esterhuizen’s heart and the two have become inseparable since he took him in five months ago.
“Bailey was born to be a biker. He loves it. I got a cooler bag and reinforced it with tubing so that he is secure behind me.
“There’s a pillow and blanket in the cooler bag for his comfort. I’m very careful when I ride‚ because I have precious cargo on board‚” he said.
Esterhuizen has turned Bailey into an authentic ”road hound”‚ complete with riding goggles and a leather jacket.
“I bought some swimming goggles and got them modified so that nothing gets into his eyes when we’re riding.”
Esterhuizen said people are fascinated by them when they take to the road.
“Everybody loves Bailey…. he’s the boss around town.”
– TMG Digital/Sunday Times