Balls, Birds and Bubbles - The Story of


Help Us Help More Golden’s Like Charley.

Charley was a rescue dog. Like so many he came from some very sad circumstances. For most of his early life Charley was tied to a tree in a backyard and thrown scraps when his owner remembered to feed him. He was insect infested and had heartworm. The worst however was when he was left outside to face Hurricane Charley on his own. That was the final straw for some very brave people who knew of his plight. They couldn’t stand what they were seeing and so determined that he had to be liberated in order to save his life. Thank God for those people. They started a chain of events that truly did save his young life and brought him into ours.

We had recently lost our Golden girl, Maggie, also a rescue, and were having a very hard time adjusting to life without a Golden in the house. Friends heard of Charley and told us about him. We thought about it for all of two minutes and went to meet him. He was being cared for by a local groomer. We walked in and up from behind a dutch-door popped this happy, smiling, beautiful Golden boy. It was love at first sight. He was just irresistible. Charley came home with us and moved right into our hearts. What a bundle of love and affection. We couldn’t believe that a dog with his sad history would not somehow be affected by a year and a half of neglect and abuse. But that was Charley. He never looked back. He somehow knew that part of his life was gone forever. He only looked forward. And he did it with all the gusto and love for life that he had.

There are so many “Charley Stories”. He never passed up a ball that he thought he could get you to throw for him. Whether it was out in the backyard, in the pool, at Dog Beach, Charley was always ready to run down a ball and almost bring it back to you. He would always make you do a little work. And then he would go into his “pose” as he waited for you to throw the ball again. He would absolutely freeze in a perfect stance of alert attention. It was the moment we loved best. He was statuesque and stunningly beautiful. The perfect image of a Golden. Fortunately I caught him like that once in a picture. It is the one that accompanies this story.

If we were out by the pool he would spring into the air to catch a ball thrown into the pool. Many times he would catch it in mid-air and if he missed he would dive under water to get it. This could go on for hours if he could get you to play that long. He never tired of it. If you got worn out and were lying on the lounge he would bring the ball up and carefully place it next to you. He hoped he could get you back in the game and keep throwing it for him. His energy and zest for fun were inexhaustible.

Charley also loved to chase birds. It didn’t matter that he couldn’t catch them. As they flew overhead he would bark at them and run across the yard in an attempt to catch them. It was such a joy to see him running like a gazelle across the yard at top speed and bound over a low fence without breaking his stride or touching the fence. He was pure beauty in motion.

And then there were the bubbles. This was one of Charley’s funniest moments. Every morning when the pool pump turned on there were a couple of minutes when air was being cleared out of the lines and bubbles would come out of all the jets in the pool. Well that just sent Charley into a frenzy. He had to run around the pool and bark at and try to bite every single bubble that he could. We would just sit back and roar at the sight of Charley going after the bubbles. And the fun part was that would get our other two rescued Goldens, Amber and Jake, so excited that they would run around the pool barking as well. They were never quite sure why they were barking, but if it was good enough for Charley it was good enough for them.

Charley was a constant source of entertainment for us. He was also a constant source of love. He loved to cuddle up with you in a chair. He was a 75 pound lap dog. He just loved everybody. We never knew anyone who didn’t love Charley and he returned the affection twice over.

We lost our Charley June 4, 2008. He was just five years old. A heart attack suddenly took him from us. The loss was almost too much to bear and so unexpected. We thought we had many more years with him. But it was not to be. We comfort ourselves by knowing that if those brave souls had not rescued him he surely would not have survived two years. Thanks to all the wonderful people who were involved in his rescue he was given three and half extra years that he would not have had otherwise. In return he lived them with joy for life and affection for everyone he met.

We are so thankful for every precious moment we had with Charley. And we are also thankful to his Guardian Angels who rescued him and gave him a second chance at life. And to all of you who do so much to save all the Charley's out there, our everlasting respect and thanks. Charley would not have had the life he did without people like you.