I dropped by the Irish Hound pub (575 St. Paul St.) last night, just not for the usual reasons. Normally, it’s a regular stop on my friendly neighborhood happy hour circuit, but last night I went by specifically to see Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald. Along with being a great vet at Alameda East Veterinary Hospital and holding court as one of the stars of Animal Planet’s Emergency Vets, “Fitz” is also a stand-up comedian and a pretty good hand behind the bar.

His bartending stint raised over $1500 last night for the Colorado Helping Hands Foundation. If you’re an animal lover like myself, you should know about this group; the non-profit foundation helps provide life-saving care for strays and companion animals who would otherwise face euthanasia because of the cost of treatment. Donation help pets like Shadow, a young Malamute who requires a pricey shoulder surgery that his owners could not afford, and Nikita, a sweet chocolate Labrador who has lived with a broken pelvis for months now, awaiting an expensive hip replacement surgery. Of course, many of the stories will have happy endings. The group fixed a broken leg for Rufus, a gray tabby cat who is now happily healing, and saved the life of Faylene, an elderly little pug who required surgery to remove an ill-advised snack that blocked her intestines.

Want to help? Check out their website here, or send donations directly, care of the Alameda East Veterinary Hospital at 9870 East Alameda, Denver, Co 80247.