Panhandling hound makes name for himself in Ironton, Mo.

Updated: Apr. 9, 2021 at 6:02 AM CDT
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IRONTON, Mo. (KFVS) - A best kept secret, that’s what one Heartland town calls it’s community celebrity.

It’s not an attraction, business or person, instead it’s furry with four legs.

Along Highway 21 in Ironton, at the three-way intersection, the talk of the town may come as a surprise.

“He’s the biggest attraction here in Ironton.” said Sherry Miller.

His name is Ike and he’s the town beggar.

To the people who know him, he’s more than just a dog.

“I’ve heard him called the hitchhiker, cheeseburger, three-way dog, a little bit of everything.”

So, what’s his story?

Back at Highway 21 and Highway N, where Ike sits, lays and begs day after day.

“It’s family tradition I guess,” said Miller, the owner of the pooch.

A tradition that Miller said started years ago.

“Ike’s dad, John was the first one that hung out in the road,” she said.

That legacy continues and the reason makes sense!

“Treats, treats and he gets them.”

Some say he eats better than most, and it’s worth risking his own fur.

“Chicken breast from town and country. He’ll get biscuits and gravy, cheeseburgers from McDonalds. He don’t care for hot dogs because I seen hot dogs lay out there for days. So don’t give him hot dogs,” said Miller.

Ike has made a name or two for himself here in Ironton.

“The sheriff, the mayor, the Ironton welcoming committee, the highway hound, ghost dog,” Julia Dill, Facebook page creator.

Now, people all over the country now know about him.

“So Ike is now known in Texas, Georgia, New York, Colorado and then of course all throughout Missouri,” said Dill.

Thanks to Dill and this Facebook page, Ike is getting likes, attention and more love than ever.

“We decided to collect those funny stories that people were telling about seeing him in the road, howling when an ambulance would pass by,” said Dill.

And now, his fame is going above and beyond to help the community.

With the money from ‘Ike for mayor t-shirts’ and Ike road sign they are able to give back.

“We decided let’s support Backpack Impact. It’s a local organization, their funds send meals home with kids on the weekend from school,” said Dill.

So, if you see Ike, the three-way dog, just know, he’s doing what he does best.

“He does what dogs do, but he does it out in the road and he doesn’t care,” said Miller.

Now, Ike does have a loving home just near the highway.

If you happen to see him, give him a treat or two, but just let Ike do what Ike wants to do.

Ike’s adventures in Ironton can be found on his Facebook page ‘Fans of Crossroads dog.”

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