Last week I mentioned rats in our corn crib, but did not
explain that we had a mixed breed terrier named Lucky that loved
to shake those critters once he got a hold of one.
He was the first dog I really remember from my early childhood,
as my first one was given to me at age 3, when we lived on a
dairy farm south of Waterman. Our landlord, Chicago millionaire
Harry Kirk, surprised my family with it. That dog was a purebred
Irish Setter with papers nicknamed Bynx. But he had a bad habit
of chasing cars and trucks, and one winters day chased
the milk truck on our icy road and slipped under the tires.
Then the terrier named Lucky was my dog from age 4 to 8
when we lived on a Babson farm east of town. He loved to chase
rabbits, hunt rats and annoy our farm cats. But lucky in life
he was not, as he got too close to a sickle mower cutting weeds
along the road and lost a hind leg. My father quickly wrapped
the leg and rushed him to a vet. Lucky survived and actually
learned how to run again.
I forget what happened to him, but we moved into Waterman
when I was to start third grade and my folks bought me another
dog, a Toy Terrier. I named him Inky since he was all black.
Inky was still with us when we built a home on the Baseline Road
near Genoa. We spent countless hours together exploring the banks
along the Kishwaukee River for nine years. He developed a cancerous
tumor and my dad took him to the veterinarian on our road, Doc
Corson, and he had to be put down. We shed tears over losing
Dogs owned over the years by the columnist include
from left, Bynx the Irish Setter shown with two-year-old Barry,
Lucky the Terrier posing as a sled dog for Barry (the gun was
a wooden toy) two years later, Inky the Toy Terrier held by Barry
at age 11, and one of their Beagles Cujo being cuddled by son
Darrin. (Photos from the Schrader family album)