"If an owl gets into a live hole the feathers will fly. And an owl is not averse to a meal of young dog. The dogs make a special racket when a snake comes around. I'm telling you, when they give that snake alarm the dogs come from all directions. If the snake has gone into a hole they start filling the hole with dirt. I've experimented by turning a rattlesnake loose in the town. It really stirs things up.
"These dogs are wary. If you put a trap in their hole they'll starve to death before they'll come out, and if you shoot one within two feet of its home it'll give a death leap into the hole. They're smart, I tell you. That's why it took so many years for me to learn how to keep 'em fenced. But now in the evening of life I think I've got it pretty well figured out."
He laughed again and, although the mayor is 69 years old, I saw no signs of evening.
After a last look at the dogs we drove into Lubbock. And now I learned that, although rapid expansion is claimed by many communities, Lubbock seems to have clinched the title of fastest-growing city in Texas. In 1940 its population was 31,853. Today it is about 135,000.
Lubbock is mighty proud of this growth, and its citizens predict even greater things for the future. But you can bet your bottom dollar that it will never be as big as the great prairie dog town it has replaced.