After a dog saves a disabled woman’s life, she decides to pay it forward, helping a special puppy in need.
Retired Army Sgt. Christy Gardner lost her legs while serving overseas. At home, Moxie entered her life as a seizure alert/response service dog who also helps her get around, including turning on or off lights, answering the door, and using handicapped access buttons to open and close doors.
“She’s my best friend and battle buddy wherever we go,” Gardner tells us.
But doing her darkest hours, Moxie was more than that.
“I had planned to end my life because I was fed up with the struggles with my body, but I couldn’t bring myself to abandon her,” says Gardner. “I felt like I would be letting her down and like she might become depressed or despondent over losing me, because it was her job to take care of me.”
Fortunately, Gardner did not act.
While she couldn’t pay back Moxie (dogs can’t really comprehend our appreciation), Gardner decided to pay it forward with a dog named Lucky Tim.
Born missing bones in his front let, the puppy’s elbow didn’t form properly, and the leg needed to be amputated. Like Moxie did with her, Gardner wanted to help the Lucky Tim (nicknamed Tiny Tim for his bum leg).
“I knew he would need surgery but also that he had a great personality and great potential to help teach our community,” she says.
So, Gardner asked the breeder if she could have the disabled puppy, with the hopes of training Tiny Tim to be a therapy dog. Fortunately, the breeder agreed.
Gardner lined up a potential school for Tiny Tim, where he would help students. And while she was fully ready to pay for Tiny Tim’s leg amputation, dog supplement company, VetriScience heard about the story and offered to foot the bill, donating $10,000.
“They believe in what the little guy is doing to help educate the public and also to show the kids it’s okay to be different,” Gardner says about VetriScience.
Now on his way to being a therapy dog, Tiny Tim will also be paying it forward.