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Dog Blog: Presents can come in 30-pound packages

July 22, 2010|By Pegi Lopez
  • Lazarus is a 2-year-old mix found at Ralph's supermarket.
Lazarus is a 2-year-old mix found at Ralph's supermarket. (Coastline Pilot )

My guess is that the Ralphs grocery store offers more than just groceries.

While shopping at Ralphs and worrying about what dog to write about (I didn't have any volunteers as of yet) I spied a man named Don Johnson (not the actor) who seemed very concerned about the font door of the store. We got to talking and he told me the story of his dog, Lazarus, who was leashed outside.

Lazarus is a 2-year-old mix of some kind. He is as wide as he is tall with short stubby legs and giant paws. He was curled up in a box that was sitting by the entrance with no note, nor blanket or towel to cover him. Don walked by with an "oh, poor thing" thought and continued on into the store. As he walked by the box on his way out, he stopped for a while, but nobody came to claim this shivering pooch. When he asked around no one knew anything.

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As it turned out, after his morning walk, Don had gone to Ralphs to pick up a bottle of water and came home with a bundle of dog. This bundle was wrapped in Don's windbreaker and difficult to carry. On the way home Don nick-named him Bag-O-Bricks because he was so heavy, compact and clumsy to carry. He also decided to call him Lazarus because he had risen again.

Don decided that finding the owners was the first thing to do. An ad in the PennySaver and posters around the area yielded no response. After a few weeks, he became attached to the big guy so he decided to keep and care for him.

When Lazarus got to his new home he sniffed the entire house and found that special spot — his spot. He immediately made himself at home.

Don, not being a dog-type person did not quite know what to do. He consulted with one of our local pet stores requesting the basic dog "how to(s)." Don was given the run down and headed home with the intention of putting this advice to practice. Upon his return, Don was greeted at the door with a whimpering, peeing, tail wagging pitiful looking pooch. Lazarus, at that moment, became his dog.

Lazarus' trip to the vet revealed a guess at his age and some minor health problems due to neglect, but overall he was in good shape. Not knowing who the original owners were, Lazarus received a round of dog shots, leash, harness (extra wide) and a license. The vet observed that Lazarus acted as though he had been physically abused in some way. He cowered when a human female hand was extended toward him. But if a male human's hand was extended to him, he wagged his tail and licked the hand all over.

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