LACONIA — "Lucky Jr.", the mascot at Sanborn's Auto Repair on Court Street, celebrated his third birthday in style yesterday afternoon and drew a big crowd to a ''Throwback Thursday'' event at the business.
Perhaps the best known dog in the Lakes Region, thanks to his frequent appearances in the company's ads in The Daily Sun, the affable English Lab is also a registered therapy dog according to his owner, Ginny Sanborn..
She says he has fans all around the area, including the St. Francis Home in Laconia, where he is a regular visitor, and at Huggins Hospital in Wolfeboro where all the ads featuring him are displayed.
Earlier this year he was the the guest of honor at the Profile Bank's ''Dog Days of Summer'' celebration which marked the 10th anniversary of the opening of the bank's Alton branch office.
Among those turning out for the birthday party, which featured refreshments, balloons and gift bags, was 77-year-old Bob Lemay of Laconia, who said that he and Lucky both share the same birthday.
''They didn't believe that when I first met Lucky so I showed them my driver's license,'' said Lemay, who said that since a year in a dog's life amounts to seven human years, that Lucky will some day be older than him. ''He's 21 right now in human years,'' said Lemay. That would mean that in 10 years Lucky will be 91 and Lemay only 87.
Jane Kuzmak of Laconia said that she really enjoys Lucky and was happy to be at his birthday party. ''He's more like a human being than a pet. He's just so friendly and fun to be around.''
''Everybody loves 'Lucky'. He's a well adjusted dog who loves being around people,'' says Sanborn. She says that a phone call to Michigan in an attempt to find an English Lab to replace the original Lucky led to her being referred to a person from Nashua who was an English Lab breeder.
''He had already been sold to a family but the girl thought he was too big so they brought him back and took home his sister,'' says Sanborn.
''This has been a match made in heaven,'' says Sanborn, who handles advertising and public relations for the auto repair business and is no stranger to the news media, having appeared on the Nashville Network Show in 1996 hosted by Katie Haas in which she was New Hampshire's representative in ''America's Ultimate Cowgirl'' competition.
She says that proceeds from the event, which included a raffle of tickets to Patriots-Jets football game on October 25, will go to the Franklin Animal Shelter.
"Lucky Jr.", the mascot at Sanborn's Auto Repair in Laconia, celebrated his third birthday yesterday. Shown with Lucky are Jane Kuzmak, Bob Lemay, ''Doggie'', in costume, and, kneeling. Lucky's owner Ginny Sanborn, and Shane Kaplan. (Roger Amsden/for The Laconia Daily Sun)
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