Local pet honoured for saving life
Retired police dog “Arik” inducted into Animal Hall of Fame
Retired RCMP police dog Arik of Big Baddeck, was recently recognized for his part in rescuing 89-year-old Lloyd Stone in March 2017. Calvin Kuchta, then 17, recognized Stone’s abandoned car and knew something was wrong. Stone had fallen in the woods while cross-country skiing in Big Baddeck. Thanks to Kuchta’s astuteness and Arik’s keen sense of smell and hearing, Stone was found before succumbing to hypothermia.
Arik flew to Toronto earlier this month with Kuchta to be inducted into the Purina Animal Hall of Fame. He may have had to ride in cargo to the ceremony, but once there, it was all red carpets and endless (well-deserved) treats.
“He’s been spoiled rotten,” said Kuchta by phone from Toronto. “It’s been a luxurious experience for him. We have access to treats that he’s been going pretty crazy about. He gets a lot of those. The people have been great down here, they treat him well.”
The eight and one-half year old German shepherd became part of the Kuchta family two years ago when a torn ACL forced him into retirement. Kuchta says his canine pal is trained to be high-intensity and extremely confident. He started retirement a little hyper, but has calmed down since then.
“For the first couple of months, he didn’t really understand the concept of not jumping up on the counters and stealing food.”
Beyond being a loyal companion, Kuchta says Arik is a laid-back family member with a sense of humour.
Baddeck resident Calvin Kuchta poses with his family dog Arik, after receiving a medal for induction into the Purina Animal Hall of Fame. The above photo is from a video profile of Arik and Calvin's story and can be viewed at...