In what could be the cutest duo ever, Charlie and his seeing-eye puppy Maverick have become best friends for life.
11-year old Golden Retriever Charlie lost both his eyes to underlying health issues. After having his left eye removed in 2016 due to glaucoma, his owners Adam and Chelsea Stipe had to make another trip to the vet the following year because Charlie showed signs of pain in his right eye, which had to be removed as well.
Living with a physical disability can be as detrimental to canines as it is to humans. It’s easy to lose feelings of joy and to become depressed when one’s sight is taken by disease.
While Charlie responded well to the surgery and displayed good physical health, it was quite evident that his mental well-being had taken a significant hit. Charlie showed signs of despondence and was unresponsive to playful and fun activities. It became challenging to get him to engage like he used to, and he lost interest in many of the things that previously would have had him be a happy and excited dog.
Noticing their pet’s depression, Adam and his wife decided to reignite Charlie’s feelings of joy and life by getting him a companion of his own; one to grow alongside their soon-to-be-born child and to serve as a loyal ally to Charlie. The Stipe family was able to welcome a new puppy into their family; Maverick.
Although Charlie was reluctant at first to accept the younger Golden Retriever, the duo’s differences soon became the cause of a beautiful friendship. Maverick’s youthful energy and vibrance proved to be the jolt needed to respark Charlie’s excitement. And even though he’s just a few months old, Maverick has been aware of his older friend’s lack of sight and has adjusted many of his lifestyle habits to help Charlie get around.
With Charlie, we’ve learned that man’s best friend can have dog best friends as well. With the beautiful friendship between these two Golden Retrievers, Charlie and Maverick, it’s evident that anything is possible with the right ones there to support you.
According to Charlie’s owner Chelsea, Maverick constantly helps Charlie stay on the path during walks. He helps put toys within Charlie’s reach during playtime, and Maverick takes care of his best dog friend by always being on the lookout when Charlie’s on the move in order to keep him out of harm’s way. Even when they’re relaxing at home, Maverick never leaves his old friend’s side, and provides him reassurance that he’s not alone.
Maverick has become Charlie’s eyes, allowing him to still navigate the world around him. Many call Maverick “Charlie’s little seeing-eye dog,” and the two are always together. With each passing day, their friendship continues to blossom and their bond grows stronger.
Even though Charlie will never regain his sight, it’s evident that there’s still so much beauty for him to experience in life, as Maverick is always by his side.