By: Jeremy D. Wells
Carter County Times
While delivering papers to our retail outlets last week, I watched a gentleman enter the Olive Hill Save A Lot with his dog following at heel. When he went into the store, the dog followed and then sat there in the entrance while he shopped. She waited for a while, then let herself back outside using the automatic door. While I was putting papers in the rack, and counting unsold papers, she let herself back in and continued to sit patiently just inside the entrance while her owner shopped. When he came to check out, she let herself back outside and waited outside the exit for him to come out.
It was interesting to see how she understood the automatic doors, and she gave me a little doggy grin when I spoke to her, saying, “You just come and go as you please, don’t you?”
It reminded me of a dog my uncle used to have. Lugnut was his garage dog when he ran a gas station in South Shore. When he closed his garage, Lugnut moved to my grandma’s home. But that didn’t stop him from coming and going as he pleased. He often made the trip over Morton Hill to “visit his girlfriend” at the house next to the garage.
Several times I’d be on my way home at night and would see him trotting along Route 7, heading back toward my grandma’s house. When I spotted him doing this I’d stop, open the passenger door, and say, “Come on, Nut.”
He’d hop inside and sit in the passenger floorboard – he was much too polite to put his muddy paws in the seat – until I pulled up outside my grandparents’ house. Then he’d hop out and trot through the gate to his spot on the porch.
Lugnut was also a dedicated ball chaser, and could have been one of those competitive Frisbee catching dogs given the right training. He was also the only dog I’ve ever known who could climb a step ladder, something my uncle discovered when he tried to put the ball out of reach and Lugnut climbed a display rack to get to it.
He really was the smartest dog I’ve ever known, and the epitome of “a good boy.”
Jeremy D Wells can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org