Owner receives letter granting dog unemployment benefits

SAUGATUCK, Mich. (AP/WSVN) — A Michigan man says his dog was approved for $360 a week in unemployment benefits after scammers got ahold of his information.

Ryder is a German Shepherd owned by attorney Michael Haddock in Saugatuck, Michigan.

WZZM-TV reports that Haddock received a benefits letter addressed to “Michael Ryder” from Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency. The station says Haddock contacted the agency about the letter.

“My name is Michael; my dog is Ryder,” Haddock told the station. “I was surprised to see it, but I had a good laugh, actually.”

The agency says its computer system sent the letter, but the claim later was flagged as suspicious and denied.

Haddock later joked about the ordeal on social media, according to WZZM.

“So my dog Ryder gets approved for unemployment benefits of 360 per week,” Haddock wrote on Facebook. “I call the state and get a voice mail they are busy, call back. Not sure what he is going to do with the money but should be interesting. I knew he was clever but he surprised me on this one.”

Investigations administrator Tim Kolar wrote in a tongue-in-cheek email that he knows “first-hand it is rare for `man’s best friend’ to contribute financially to the household and that will continue in this instance.”

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