Wednesday, September 13, 2006


Not a pussy cat story tonight...PUPPY DOG SAVES DOCTOR!

I have this history habit I find hard to break. Perhaps a support group might help. But for now I must continue with my old dog tales.

This story took place once again in my home town in northern Minnesota, around the end of the 60's. During my party days just before I graduated from high school.

My best friends father was a guide for these weekend hunter types from suburban Minneapolis and as far away as Chicago. Most of them couldn't tell east from south if you pointed them at the rising sun. Well that's kinda what make this story funny.

A certain phyiscian from the twin cities came up to our little piece of heaven and blasted at most everything he thought he could fit into his Jeep. This he did on a regular basis. Our town was very close to the Canadian border, so many moose hunters came through on their way to Ontario. Canada allowed a certain amount of moose to be killed each year, whereas our state protected the majestic beasts.

Dr. Benson usually stayed in our village for a few days to drink. The old doc was a real lover of the booze. He'd drink with Pop, that was my friends dad, the guide. They'd scare half the women and make enemies of half the men, before they picked up there rifles and followed the tracks.

On the third day he and Pop outfitted for a week of hunting, north of Thunder Bay. The second day into the hunt, my friend got a call from her dad. The good old tip-'em-high-get-the-last-drop doc was lost in the wilderness in his longjohns with only his loyal buddy Harry the wolfhound for company.

It seems Dr. Benson got so excited at seeing a live moose walk past their camp that he grabbed nothing but his rifle before stocking out after a 2500 pound tree demolisher to his near death. Because as I recall the snow had begun and this fool was padding around the forest in his underwear. In truth I do not think he saw a moose, most hunted animals become extremely hard to find during hunting season.

But that was his story! He followed a moose out of camp in his underwear. More likely, he heard a couple of squirrels raising hell because the weekend killers were camping to near their winter cache. No one else in camp saw him leave. No one else in camp heard, saw or smelled a moose. And believe me you can smell them! Pop and two other guys were very much asleep. Doc was probably cranking out all sorts of exotic creature via delirium tremens. He probably saw any number of wildlife that fated evening. An imagined moose being one of them.

Well, this is pretty much what happened: for two nights Dr. Benson braved the harsh near freezing temperature in just his back-door bibs. With only his wonderful trustworthy Harry the wolfhound to keep him from taking that very final last trekk. The old drunk limped out some twenty miles from camp. The dog brought him back to safety by locating a logging road.

The hungry man and dehydrated pup were taken to Rydens border restaurant. As the reporter were popping questions at the frozen doctor, a waitress subservantly passed him a bowl of hot beef soup. No attention was given to the pooped pup. Old doc was busy impressing to the press with his survival story. He explained how he found a trail and walked out of the bush with no help from anyone. No credit was bestowed on the one who saved his alcoholic skin.

Finally Pop could stand no more, he stepped up to the table took the bowl of soup from the braggered and set in on the floor in front of the pooch. Happily the real hero lapped up the steaming broth. "There's your hero," Pop told the reporter, as he walked out of the cafe. Pop never saw the weekend hunter doctor again!

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