CHARLOTTE, NC (Anna Douglas/Charlotte Observer) - A man and his dog who grabbed headlines in Charlotte last year are now living in coastal South Carolina — getting attention again for the same thing: They are homeless.
Concerned neighbors want to help them.
And, the 80-pound dog — a Labrador named Levi — is still spending much of his day in a crate on wheels.
The man and his dog have earned both sympathy and scrutiny in Garden City, S.C. — much like they did in Charlotte.
Already, a local television station reports, passerby have called the Grand Strand Humane Society, concerned about the dog's health.
Alan Lord, 44, stared down similar criticisms last year in Charlotte, his hometown, after months of complaints to local officials. Some dog-lovers and other Charlotte residents were upset that Levi the dog was kept inside a crate that didn't allow much movement.
They campaigned for local Animal Control officials to confiscate Lord's dog.
Lord grew increasingly worried, he told the Observer in October, that he and Levi would be separated.
"He's all I have," Lord said as he sat in a Bojangles' parking lot near Old Pineville and Woodlawn roads. "He's my best friend and always will be."
Pressure was mounting, though, on Mecklenburg County animal control officers who had been trying for months to assist Lord and Levi. The city ended up issuing Lord a ticket - citing a local regulation that prohibits pet owners from keeping dogs confined to outdoor kennels or crates.
At the time, Lord planned to go to Hawaii and live with his brother. The Observer reported Animal Control officials attempted to help him gather necessary paperwork to travel by airplane to the island with a large dog.
Instead, though, the pair headed south.
Lord and Levi are nearly 175 miles away in Garden City, near popular tourist spots like Myrtle Beach, Surfside and Murrells Inlet.
They sleep outside and get help from strangers with food and money.