“One month after adopting 6-year-old Barney in 2002, we adopted 10-week-old Ace from GRRMF,” Charles explains.
Adorable little Ace was one of 16 puppies, along with seven adult dogs, saved from a dire hoarding situation by Sarasota Animal Services, and affectionately labeled the “Sarasota 23.”
“A scant two months later, in November, we took Barney and Ace to Orlando where they participated in the Parade of Rescue at the annual Golden Retriever Club of America National Specialty. (One popular feature of the GRCA National Specialty is showcasing all aspects of the Golden Retriever in conformation, field and performance venues).
“Eventually, they both attended classes at obedience school and earned their CGC certifications. After further, extensive training, Barney became an Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) dog and together, we visited several of our local rehabilitation centers in town.
“We also brought Ace and Barney to a number of Petsmart locations in our area on weekends twice a month where we set up ‘Rescue Education’ tables and explained what we did and why to as many customers as possible. But we didn’t stop there. Over the years, we attended numerous local pet events, setting up those same ‘Rescue Education’ tables and conversing with everyone who stopped at them.
“Sadly, we lost Barney to cancer in 2005 while Ace lived a happy, loving and much-loved life until, at the age of 12, he joined Barney in 2014.”