A Dog Named Jeff

In honor of Veteran’s Day:

The winner of the 2004 DogHero.com heroic dog story contest was a piece by Wayne McDowell about a Border Collie mix named Jeff. Tissues required.

A Dog Named Jeff
By Wayne H. McDowell

Like a lot of the young men of my generation, I spent time in the Army
and slightly less than a year of that time was spent in the Vietnam War.
For part of that period I was stationed a small “firecamp,” roughly 200
of us or so, and there was also a “camp mutt” called Jeff. Jeff was of
indeterminate breed, a medium sized dog, about 30 to 40 pounds or so. He
was a black and white dog that always put me in mind of a miniature Border
Collie, but with floppy hound dog ears. He had a single toy, a tennis ball,
the old off-white kind. When he wanted to play fetch, he would carry the
ball around until he found his chosen playmate, then drop the ball at the
person’s feet and bark until these slow-witted humans got the idea to throw
it for him.

Jeff was sort of a camp mascot for us. It was good luck to give Jeff a
quick pet before heading out on a patrol, and he seemed to understand that,
and to understand what was going on around him. If things went badly “out
there” (as they sometimes did,) he would meet you as you came back,
running from one soldier to another as if checking, and if someone wasn’t
there, he would go up to one of his special “friends” (of which I was one)
and nudge them worriedly, as if asking “What happened out there? Where’s

… read more …

Also check out Johann’s Veteran’s Day post about Chips.

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About Christopher

Christopher Landauer is a fifth generation Colorado native and second generation Border Collie enthusiast. Border Collies have been the Landauer family dogs since the 1960s and Christopher got his first one as a toddler. He began his own modest breeding program with the purchase of Dublin and Celeste in 2006 and currently shares his home with their children Mercury and Gemma as well. His interest in genetics began in AP Chemistry and AP Biology and was honed at Stanford University.