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As this month’s print issue clearly illustrates, Denverites love their dogs. So I thought it would be appropriate to share the sad/happy story of Charlie, a little 3 pound Yorkie youngster who was recently adopted by Ashley, a friend-of-a-friend of mine. The story goes like this: Ashley had long wanted a Yorkie, and was actively looking for one this spring, until she lost her job in June. Shortly thereafter, while jogging in Wash Park, she ran into a family holding a cute little Yorkie. She stopped to admire, scratch ears, and coo over the little guy, and the family surprised her by handing her the dog, asking if she’d be willing to take care of him. You see, once the wiggly pup hit the ground, it became obvious that all was not well. This little Yorkie had serious trouble with his hind legs, wobbling and weaving across the grass. The family had taken the pup in as a stray, but were not able to afford the vet care that he clearly required. Not that Ashley had the funds either, but she couldn’t resist. She took him home, scraped up the money for a vet visit, and — after posting notices and checking with the local shelters to locate the original owners — found herself the proud caretaker of a sweet, happy, disabled doggie. Fast forward to the next chapter. Turns out, Charlie, as he is now known, has a neurological disorder that may improve with time and treatment. Then again, he may never walk or run correctly, but Ashley reports that he never lets it get him down. Charlie gallumphs instead of gallops, but he’s a happy little tyke — especially when Ashley scoops him up and takes him for bike rides in her bike basket. Ashley adores this little dog, and hopes to get him involved with local hospitals as a visiting therapy dog. But she’s still in a money crunch, and would greatly appreciate any assistance with Charlie’s vet and treatment costs. Interested in helping? Donations are being accepted at: Zen Dog Pet Boutique 1550 Platte St. Unit C Denver, CO 80202 Or, call 303-744-7067