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Maryland winery employs delivery dog for curbside pick-ups

March 31 (UPI) -- A Maryland winery is observing social distancing protocol in its curbside deliveries with an unusual employee -- a delivery dog.

Stone House Urban Winery in Hagerstown has been offering curbside pickup to abide by the government's orders during the COVID-19 pandemic, and to make sure employees and customers keep a safe distance the deliveries are being made by a 75-pound brindle boxer named Soda Pup.

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"We've had people call in just specifically to have soda pup bring wine out to them. people who have never even been here before," Lori Yata, Soda Pup's owner and co-owner of the winery, told WJLA-TV.

Yata said the 11-year-old canine only carries two bottles of wine at a time and gets plenty of breaks to keep him from getting exhausted.

She said the business is trying to keep an optimistic outlook during the coronavirus crisis.

"We are going to look for the positive side of this, closing the store allow us to do things we normally can not keep up with, we are making tons of wine, we hope to get into the festival in the fall, which means we gotta make more wine," she told WDVM-TV.

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