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Good boy! Now, go lie down

If you visit the website of the Tudor Grange Hotel in Bournemouth on England's Dorset seacoast, you'll find discussions of its long and proud history, its popular concerts on the lawn, its availability for weddings, and other features. Nowhere, however, is there a reference to perhaps its most famous attraction, Boris. Who's Boris and what makes him so special? Ah, well, that would be because he can be seen from space. OK, not distinctly, but there's no doubt that his shape is visible in satellite-mapping images available on Google Earth.

Fran Milner's family operates the hotel, and Boris is her pet bull mastiff. Or perhaps that should be bull massive, since there can be no argument that the dog is huge – far bigger than males of his breed typically grow. Give or take a few table scraps (which is what guests apparently enjoy feeding him each morning), he tips the scales at 200 pounds, which would make him roughly equal in size to three adult German shepherds or 10 beagles. Anyway, Fran's brother-in-law happened to be surfing the Internet for destinations recently and on a whim he zoomed in on the Tudor Grange. And there, on the grass beside the sundial, was a "big brown blob." It could only be Boris because that's his favorite spot to sprawl after he chows down on those breakfast leftovers. (The bed-and-breakfast serves traditional morning meals of sausage, bacon, eggs, and fried tomatoes.) In addition to those satellite photos, guests now all seem to want their pictures taken with the dog. "I knew he was big," Fran said. "But I didn't think he was big enough to be seen from space."


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