Pets: The Dog I'll Always Remember

Jeff Herring

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I will always remember the night in 8th grade when my family went to the mall just for the heck of it.

We ended up in a pet store and fell in love with a Siberian Husky puppy with gorgeous blue eyes. Next thing I knew, we were taking him home!

Looking back on this now that I am a parent, I'm guessing that it was a bit more than just chance that had us at the mall.

Little puppy, huge feet

While just a little puppy, this dog had such huge paws. We quickly decided he was an outside dog.

I got to name him, and chose King. He acted like one too. We lived on an inside corner lot and the backyard was about half an acre. King roamed that little half acre as if it was his.

At night King slept on the screened in back porch. The only problem was that he would only come in for me. My dad would yell and yell and King would not come in. My dad would have to wake me up, and I would stumble half awake onto the porch and quietly say “King, get in, " and he would come running.

Thanksgiving 1974

Even though he had a huge backyard to roam, Kind would take every opportunity he had to get out of the yard. I could usually catch him on our street. This was good, because we lived two streets off of Highway 436, a then four lane highway in Winter Park, Florida.

On Thankgiving afternoon of 1974, King got out and I could not catch him on our street. He made it out to the street that led to the highway, and was running full speed for the highway. I was sure I would not catch him in time. Before he even got to the highway, he ran in front of an old Ford Mustang and got hit.

I screamed as I watched him get hit, go under the front of the car, and I swear I am not making this up, come out the left side, between the front and rear tire, and come out running to me!

I stood there sure I had been transported to the Twilight Zone. The car stopped and we took him to the vet, but this was 1974 and there was of course no vet open on Thanksgiving Day. When we took King in the next week, he was fine.

Just a few thoughts that came to mind as I prepare to get my kids their first dog for Christmas.

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