EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Self-described as just “a guy who takes care of a dog,” Newburgh veterinarian Dr. Don Lutton will soon have to find space on his office wall for a special plaque given him Thursday by the Indiana State Police.
Lutton was recognized for his continued efforts with one of the police agency’s K-9 units.
Lutton has been taking care of Rydr, a 10-year-old Slovakian Shepherd, for the past five years free of charge since Evansville District Sgt. Kevin Brown has been the dog’s handler. Rydr retired from active service in November. Rydr and Brown had been partners for about 5 ½ years. In total, Rydr spent almost seven years working for the agency.
Lutton was already Brown’s veterinarian for his personal pet when Lutton took Rydr on as a patient. Lutton told the Evansville Courier & Press (http://bit.ly/1kH9cFk ) he refused to accept payment for the dog’s care from the start.
“I thought, ‘I really appreciate the work that the state police, the county and the city (departments) do, and I want to do something for them in return. I decided I was just going to claim Rydr as my project,” Lutton said as he received the award from state police at his office. “We’ve done that over the years, and he’s been a good dog. We were a little bit leery at first at what (caring) for a trained dog like that would be (like), but it has turned out that as long as we don’t say certain words, it’s fine.”
Lutton also promised to continue Rydr’s free medical care even though the dog has retired and has simply become part of Brown’s home. Brown and his girlfriend, Brooke Henry, also have a shorgi at home.