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Dog Makes Deliveries

July 9, 2020


While we’re incredibly grateful for the important work delivery people have been doing during the coronavirus pandemic, we can’t help but be a bit jealous of customers of one market in Medellin’s Tulipanes neighborhood.

Every day, Eros — an eight-year-old chocolate Labrador — climbs up and down the hilly neighborhood’s steps, bringing baskets of vegetables, fruit, and packaged foods to customers of El Porvenir mini-market. He does his work nobly, asking only for treats in return for his services.

While he cannot memorize delivery addresses, he can remember people.

“He knows the names of five or six of our customers,” Eros’ owner Maria Natividad Botero told The Associated Press. “So I send the merchandise with a receipt in the basket, and my customers pay me through a bank transfer.”

But just because the groceries are being delivered by dog does not mean that customers can skimp on the tip. “He’s quite a glutton,” Botero said. “He won’t leave your house until you give him a treat.”

Eros is an adopted dog, brought into the family by the request of Botero’s son. When the family opened their market four years ago, Eros began to accompany them on their deliveries and memorized the names of customers.

As Colombia combats the coronavirus pandemic, with over 200,000 cases recorded by Johns Hopkins University, the government has placed restrictions on how often citizens can go out for groceries — making Eros an essential employee.

But he is not the only non-human helping out during the pandemic. Sunny, a golden retriever in Colorado, has been delivering groceries to an elderly neighbor living under confinement, local news reported in March. And in San Diego, therapy dogs are getting online and working to give virtual emotional support to anyone “who needs healing.”

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