Cuba Dog Saves Master’s Life

Wonderful Intelligence Displayed by “Laddie,” J. F. Olive’s Canine Friend.

(Cuba Patriot)

“Laddie,” J. F. Olive’s dog, known to everybody in and about Cuba, the other night added another to the large number of accomplishments which mark him as a canine of unusual intelligence.

Mr. Olive had been across Cuba Lake visiting cottages and was returning home afoot about 10:30. Suddenly he stepped upon some thin ice and plunged into the lake. The ice was brittle all around him and he could not secure a hold sufficient to enable him to get out. Pieces of ice kept bumping him and he was afraid of being forced under the unbroken part. He was pretty well exhausted and the situation was becoming critical, when Laddie, who had run ahead, arrived on the scene.

Just what passed through Laddie’s brain nobody will ever know; but what he did is a matter of record. He went over to the edge of the ice and stuck his head out as far as he could toward his master. Mr. Olive made his way over to where the dog was, reached up and took hold of his collar. Then the dog started to back, bracing his feet and pulling with all his might as he did so. Mr. Olive held on the resistance tarnished by Laddie giving just the help he needed. At first the ice broke under him as formerly, but never far enough to engulf Laddie, who tugged away for dear life. Finally together they work their way to thicker ice, and by supreme effort of man and dog Mr. Olive floundered out of the water and onto the surface of the ice, where he lay panting for a few moments, more firmly convinced than ever that Laddie is the most wonderful dog in the world.

The latter opinion is not held by Mr. Olive alone, but is shared by about everybody who knows Laddie. The dog is nine years old, of the Llewellyn strain of English setter, and was raised by Mr. Olive from a pup, as were his father and mother. No special effort was ever made to teach him, but he knows a lot of things. When Mr. Olive lived on Orchard street a few years ago the dog always did the marketing, taking a basket to meat market or grocery and bringing it home filled. Mr. Olive is this winter living on Main Street with his parents. Laddie has been doing the marketing from there also. The other day Mr. Olive started home with a basket of groceries, but pretty soon he was back down to town again. It required much urging to get him to go to the Main Street residence a second time, and he repeatedly started for the old home on Orchard street. The cause was revealed when Mr. Olive went how at noon and found that on Laddie’s first trip to the house no one was there to let him in. Evidently, Laddie figured the folks had gone back to the old place on Orchard street, and so wanted to go there.

When Mr. Olive was postmaster of Cuba, Laddie did the banking for him right along. Each morning Mr. Olive put the money and checks in his bank book and gave it to Laddie, who took it the bank, waited while the entry was made, then brought back the book. Laddie will take a note to his master anywhere, and insists on butting in among any company Mr. Olive may be with for the purpose. He’s no slow messenger boy either.

Formerly the Olives owned a cat, which was a great playmate of Laddie. Wherever he might be, Mr. Olive could send Laddie to bring the cat to him. The first few trips the dog got well scratched up in the job, but he paid no attention to that and kept right at it until he delivered the goods. Finally the cat ceased her resistance and when she saw Laddie coming with business in his eye would resign herself to the inevitable, submit to being picked up by Laddie, and rather seems to enjoy the ride between his big but Kindly jaws.

Laddie is a wonderful dog. As his master says, he “knows more than a lot of people, and is a darned sight better natured.”