SWOSU's Duke the Bulldog is Retiring


Duke, the mascot of SWOSU, will be retiring and area residents are invited to stop by for pictures and refreshments on Tuesday, May 1, from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. in the Memorial Student Center lobby on the Weatherford campus. This “high five” picture appeared in a national publication in 2008. Duke is retiring because of health reasons.

Duke the Bulldog at Southwestern Oklahoma State University is retiring.

Duke, who became SWOSU’s mascot in 2007, garnered both state and national press after an incident that occurred in late 2009.

A come-and-go retirement party for 6-year-old Duke is planned on Tuesday, May 1, from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. in the Memorial Student Center lobby. Everyone is invited to enjoy cookies/punch and have pictures made with Duke before he leaves the Weatherford campus because of health reasons and goes back to his original owner, Bob Newcomb of Elk City.

Duke became well known around Oklahoma and parts of the nation when in 2009 he endured two surgeries after swallowing a 10-foot cotton rope. His love of snooping around and getting into things he shouldn’t have been doing caused a miserable December for the mischievous dog. He survived but has suffered over the years from severe allergies.

Duke is officially recorded a “Champion” by the American Kennel Club. In 2008, Duke’s portrait was published in the March edition of the American Kennel Club Gazette.

While in Weatherford, Duke was housed at the home of Rita Hays, a faculty member at SWOSU. Duke made many appearances at SWOSU events and was popular with students and area children.