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Jefferson enjoys special celebration on birthday

Basset hound is a King City celebrity


by: BARBARA  SHERMAN - BIRTHDAY BOY - Jefferson, held by owner Barbara Erickson, licks his lips after enjoying a treat during his birthday party Feb. 16.Everyone in King City apparently knows Jefferson, a popular basset hound owned by Nancy Duthie and her daughter Barbara Erickson.

"He turned 5 years old on Valentine's Day, but we waited to have his birthday party until Saturday the 16th because it was an easier day for people to come," Nancy said. "We always have a birthday party, but we don't invite other dogs - just family. It's very exclusive. Last year I made him a hat in the shape of a bone.

"He's stubborn - he's very much a basset hound, and he doesn't know a stranger. He thinks he's the official greeter of King City. Everyone we pass must stop and greet him. If he wants to walk, he stares at us until we go. We walk all over, from the Plaza to the Community Park."

On the day of Jefferson's party, the dining room table was covered with a dog-print tablecloth and featured doggie plates and napkins. The table was laden with presents, and of course, a birthday cake with a candy bone and heart-shaped cookie on top.

The presents included a "Healthy Pets Cookbook" featuring "50 nutritious and delicious recipes your dog will love."

"We always make his food," Nancy said.

Also on the table was a box of "deer ears" (venison ears) from New Zealand along with stuffed animals, other treats and cookies.

Jefferson got his name because he is originally from Jefferson, Ore., "and he likes going to Community Park to look at the river," Barbara said. "He likes to check out the river and walk through Bedford Glen, and we have taken him to the balloon festival. However, he does have a short attention span."