Working dogs

— Photo by Danielle Zerbonne

When dog owners work a normal 40-hour work week, a dog’s life can be pretty boring. Here’s a sampling of lucky dogs, and their owners, who get to spend time with each other all day at work.

Duncan Business Associates: Blue is a friendly seven-year-old cocker spaniel mix owned by Susan Woods. On a recent afternoon at the office, Blue entertained himself with a toy rabbit, which made an incongruous quacking sound as he tossed it about. “His ‘sister’ gave it to him,” said Susan, whose children refer to Blue as their “little brother.”

SBS: Buddy is an eight-year-old Icelandic sheepdog, owned by Liz Packer. “He’s a working dog, so he comes to work. He loves going on deliveries with either beach or Land Bank access.” Buddy has come to the store since Liz took on ownership/management of the business, about seven years ago. “He was a farm dog first, and now we bring him to work. He loves his job.”

Karpet Kare: Cricket is an 11-year-old black lab owned by Liz Dowd. Cricket got her name after Liz once saw her leaping through a hay field like a little bug. “She’s got a following,” Liz said. It includes some gentlemen who stop in to donate biscuits when they’re picking up food at Humphreys next door. “She’s been coming to work with me for 10 years,” and though she’s getting a little gray around the edges, she still squirms like a puppy when the treats come out.”

Vineyard Hearth Patio and Spa: Frankie is an eight-year-old mixed breed, owned by Patricia Parker. “He makes the place more homey,” said Patricia, as Frankie gnawed contentedly on a large bone, in front of a glowing fireplace. Parker has had Frankie for just a year, when she got him from a family in Maine where he wasn’t a great fit. His new life includes hiding his bones among the furniture at the store and greeting his favorite visitor, the FedEx driver, who always has a treat to offer.

Vineyard Electronics: Amazing Grace the Red Sox Rally Dog (Gracie, to friends) is a seven-year-old black lab owned by Don and Linda Sibley. Her impressive moniker comes from the story of her birth – she entered the world as the Red Sox were winning the World Series. Gracie enjoys lounging in her bed near the window and next to the baby monitors.

Jardin Mahoney: Sherman and Peabody are two-and-one-half year old golden retrievers from the same litter, owned by Paul and Linda Mahoney. “They run the place,” said Paul. “A lot of people stop in just to see the dogs.”

The dogs even have their own wooden sign hanging outside the office, where they can often be found lounging on overstuffed leather chairs or chewing on tennis balls, when they aren’t trotting around the grounds and greeting customers with customary golden cheerfulness.

Vineyard Home Center: Lucy is a 10-year-old black lab owned by Adam and Cindy Wansiewicz. “She’s part of the family. She’s been coming to work with me since she was a baby,” said Adam. “More people know Lucy than know me, by a mile.” Lucy has indulged in a bit of wandering, occasionally to SBS for a snack, and one hot summer she slipped away to take a dip in the Island Adventure mini-golf pool.

Larry’s Tackle Shop: Shady is a 10-year-old yellow lab, owned by Steve Purcell. Shady was a regular at the shop, acting as official greeter, fishing charter partner, and general doorstop. He now spends more time at home keeping Steve’s energetic new puggle company.

Island Entertainment: Moony, an Icelandic sheepdog owned by Anne Evasick, enjoys wiling away the hours at the video store, often with several canine companions. Recently, Moony and Riley, a friend’s Maltese mix, laid like mismatched bookends against a wall of DVDs. “Some days,” Anne said, “we have five dogs in here.”