Every town needs a doggy ambassador! They say you never forget who your friends are, and this rescued pup proves that point in a way that makes our hearts melt.
In the world of rescued/adopted pets, there’s something informally known as the ‘adoption gene.’ This adoption gene seems to be innately represented in each rescued animal and is expressed in his or her abundant gratitude for the people around them.
We don’t think there’s a better representation of that than what we found right outside of the small town of Longville, Minnesota, where a dog once known to roam the streets remembers his humble beginnings, and is a perfect picture of the Bob Seger lyrics, “I’m a Traveling Man, love when I can.”
Bruno, a lovable mix who calls Debby and Larry LaVallee ‘mom’ and ‘dad’ has such a special daily routine, he’s been made ambassador of the town. With a population of about 150, this small town delights each day as Bruno makes walks from his home outside of Longville and into the town to greet all the neighbors.
Yes, you read that right. Every day for the last 12 or so years, Bruno has walked about 4 miles (8, round-trip!) to say, “Hello!” to the locals. As he moseys from neighbor to neighbor, he collects pets, treats and snuggles, and gives the town’s residents an opportunity to visit a bit with him. At the end of his daily visitation, he returns back to his home, although dad Larry says he sometimes even, “Catches a ride.” Longville local Mary Tripp acts as one of his chauffeurs, because Bruno is just, “That lovable.”
The LaVallees adopted Bruno as a puppy, believing him to be abandoned and they tried their hardest to keep Bruno from escaping and wandering around. It just didn’t work, though, as clearly Bruno feels he has a responsibility to the townspeople of Longville, and by now, it’s just common knowledge that Bruno will most likely stop by and say, “Hello!” at some point in the day.
The townfolk certainly keep watch for Bruno, making sure that he’s protected and loved. Local Patrick Moran owns a real estate office in Longville and said that Bruno is, “…Our buddy, we kind of watch out for him the best way we can.Last week he came in; stayed about an hour and a half or two hours.”
Bruno is such a celebrity, he has been bestowed with a statue and a sign that designates him as the official, “Town Dog and Ambassador,” and it’s a duty he does not take lightly! Though he is obviously aging, and some days needs to take a day off to rest his weary ‘bones,’ he certainly makes the most of each trip into town he takes. And, it’s obvious that the town he loves so much loves him right back.
If you’d like to keep up with Bruno’s adventures, you can catch him on his very own Facebook page!
Lori Ennis is a wife, mama and friend to all animals. A self-confessed “Hot Mess,” she lives wherever the Marine Corps takes her husband. Currently, that’s Maryland with her very spoiled Labrador Retriever-mix rescue pups and a ton of saltwater fish just tanking around. Lori’s family has fostered dogs for years, mostly Golden Retrievers, and knows no home is complete without an animal buddy (or seven)!