I Double Dog Dare You……

Chronicling Lewis & Clark Professors and their sidekicks

By Julie OatField /// Staff Writer 

Professors bringing their pets on campus is a recurring phenomenon, and visiting professors are no exception to the trend. We hit up history professor Craig Colbeck to learn all about his dog, Val, and their adventures together across the country.

Pio Log: How did you and Val first meet?

Craig Colbeck: I used to foster greyhounds when I lived in Florida. Florida has most of what’s left of the racing industry, in the U.S. anyway. He’s one I fostered, and I kept him for the road. Guess that was a little over a year ago.

PL: How does he, or the two of you, unwind after a long day?

CC: He doesn’t get too wound up, he lies around a lot of the day. Greyhounds will kinda follow you around at home, like when I’m watching TV or reading. I used to take him to bars—I could do that in Florida because they don’t have to serve food, unlike here, and you can bring dogs and pets in. I’d show up with a [dog] bed at a bar, he’d lie there while I had a beer.

PL: Any favorite travel destinations, or places in town you like going to?

CC: I guess we do have a favorite park, Wilshire over in Northeast where we live. He’s friendly with other dogs there, but greyhounds are bred to chase small furry things. So with little dogs, playing can get a little aggressive if I don’t keep an eye on him.

PL: Does Val have a favorite non-pet food?

CC: All too many favorites. Anything that’s left on the counter. Oh, pizza crusts.

PL: Are there any accessories Val wears?

CC: It was a hard time adjusting to the weather here. I couldn’t take him out to pee for a while, too cold. So my mom knit him a gator [neck/head covering]. He’s got a couple of jackets: one’s orange to keep him safe from deer hunters.

PL: I can see how he’d be mistaken for a deer! Anything else you’d like to add about Val?

CC: I like that he’s a low-key, low maintenance dog.

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