Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Dog-Gone Clever

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Dog-Gone Clever

Article excerpt

The relationship between dog and man has evolved over centuries. We're best friends, helpmates and sources of love and affection for one another. But in the bond between Jeff Young and Eclipse, a Seattle-area man and his two-and-a-half-year-old Labrador mix, there exists a remarkable level of trust and understanding. "I live in the city --90 percent of my time is spent in an urban landscape," says Young. "[Eclipse] has to be able to navigate the streets ... I ingrained that into her since she was a puppy. There's nothing worse than a dog that is scattered, scared and flipped out--that's not Eclipse. If she's out by herself, she knows exactly where she's going."

Regular passengers of Belltown's express bus know as much, as Eclipse often assumes the role of a fellow commuter, patiently angling for a window seat as she awaits the stop for her local dog park. Miles Montgomery, host of KISW Rock 99.9FM's "Men's Room," broke the story in mid-January after noticing Eclipse during his morning commute. "I actually thought that she was a service dog because she was wearing a red harness collar and had her tags and everything," Montgomery says. "She was wandering up and down the aisle and appeared to have no owner ... She kept looking up at me as if to ask if it was OK to sit beside me. I told her to come up and she did. I later realized she just wanted to be able to see out the window so she could get off at her stop."

Once, maybe twice a week for the past two years, Eclipse hops on the bus ahead of Young, and 12 blocks later, the two meet at Belltown's Regrade Park. …

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