Editor’s note: It’s no secret there are hard working dogs and cats. But while some are tending to traditional animal jobs, like herding cattle or mousing in barns, others are going to work with their owners and are performing “people” jobs at local stores, offices or job sites, like Fred, who hold the title of business partner at Stitch-N-Things during the day and is part of the Russell family after hours.

Names and occupation:
Fred is “almost 4-years-old” and his background and breed are a mystery, according to his owner and business partner Heidi Russell. It’s safe to describe Fred as a medium-size brown mutt. Actually that’s the only way to describe him. But he does possess some attributes that set him apart from the hundreds, if not thousands, of other dogs that look exactly like him. Fred has extremely emotion-filled and inquisitive brown eyes and a variety of facial expressions that could challenge the skills of the best Las Vegas impersonators.

Special talents:
There is no doubt where Fred’s talents lie at Russell’s 12th Avenue NW shop, he’s in charge of security. There is no need for a buzzer or bell announcing visitors. Fred’s on top of things. He wastes no time “announcing” the presence of customers with a big, booming bass bark. In fact, in earlier times, Fred would have made a fantastic town crier, because if the visitor isn’t someone he’s familiar with he keeps on keeping on to make sure Russell is aware a stranger is on the premises.
Fred’s second most important job is at the front windows of the shop. He takes his post seriously and expresses an active interest in the comings and goings in the parking lot and on the street. One never knows when something might happen and Fred will need to give a play-by-play doggie description of the action.
Then there’s a third talent that Fred is so good at he would be considered an expert. That’s naps. In his spare time, Fred naps. Where? Right beside the counter, where else?  After all he is the security chief. It’s a job that requires him to be alert with eyes wide open at any given moment.

-What makes Fred perfect for his people job?
Well first of all, he dresses for his “Top Dog” role with a bandana embroidered with his name and clearly identifies him as not just some ordinary pooch, but one with a high level job to perform.
Secondly, he can and will wait on customers, by standing on his hind legs and resting his front paws on the counter offering a variety of facial expressions that entertain and amuse, even when he’s trying to conduct serious business.
Third? Well, if the truth be known, Fred has a soft spot for cookies. Those who want to make and keep Fred as a friend can win his affection by bringing him a cookie or two when they visit the store. Just ask the UPS man. He always delivers.

If you have or know of a dog or cat that works a people job let us know. Send an email to yournews@ardmoreite.com with the animal’s name, the name of the owner and where the special dog or cat works and contact information.