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If you’ve been a Rich’s Auto Center customer or a guest, you would have likely met Charlie, the resident ‘Shop Dog.’ Charlie is typically lounging in the back of the shop, watching all the vehicles being serviced, and waiting for his next scratch by one of the auto technicians as they pass by.

“Charlie has been coming to work with my husband, Rich and I since we adopted him from the Allen County SPCA over 7 years ago. Now, he gets bored at home, and he’s ready to leave for work when I am every morning. He really enjoys interacting with customers, staff and delivery people,” Cindy Elzey, Owner of Rich’s Auto Center commented.

In celebration of his 8th birthday, Charlie will be hosting a big party, open to the public, and would like to invite all his dog friends, owners and pet lovers to come celebrate with him too. Charlie would like the party to be a fundraiser and pet food-raiser to support his friends at the Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry. The event will be held on October 26 at Rich’s Auto Center, 2135 Sandpoint Rd. Fort Wayne, In 46809, from 1-3pm.

In lieu of gifts, Charlie is asking for dry pet food or monetary donations from the public for his friends at The Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry.

“Charlie has always been very social and friendly to all animals, even cats.” Elzey continued, “On many occasions, he has shown Rich and I that he truly cares by helping other animals out of trouble. I think he sees all other pets as his friend, and I would imagine that he wants to make sure they are taken care of.”

With a donation at the entrance, guests will be entered in a chance to win $250 worth of service.

But that’s not all! The host of honor has many other fun things planned for the party. Cake and refreshments for human guests. Dog friendly baked goods will be available for a $1 donation (to take home). Dogs will be welcome to come and play in a fenced in grass and asphalt area. You can have your picture taken with Charlie, with a $5 donation. The Allen County SPCA will be on hand with some adoptable dogs to meet and greet and find their forever family. Microchips will be available for a low donation of $5. A registered vet tech will also administer them because Charlie wants to make sure his dog friends are returned home quickly and safely if they are ever lost, and he believes in this procedure.

In 2018, the Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry distributed 69,135 pounds of food to help pets and their owners in the community. The Pantry is an all-volunteer nonprofit that provides free pet food to those who are struggling financially, including families, people with disabilities, the elderly, disabled veterans, and the homeless. They distribute dry food, canned food and treats out of their center at 2502 Church St. in Fort Wayne as well as at many other locations throughout Fort Wayne. The Pantry recently received an award from Pets of the Homeless for distributing the most pounds of pet food in the entire nation. “When hard times come, we do everything we can to keep families together, and their pets out of shelters,” Rochele Watson, Executive Director of The Fort Wayne Pet Food Pantry commented.

More information about Charlie’s Birthday Bash can be found on Facebook.

Alex Cornwell

Alex Cornwell

The Owner & Publisher of The Waynedale News. Alex is a community leader and founder of various organizations, events & improvement initiatives in the area. He is also the recipient of 2019's Allen County Vandeveer Impact Award and 2012's University of Saint Francis' Distinguished Young Alumni Award. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer