Dogs are typically described as “man’s best friend,” but Moxie the golden retriever is so much more than that to her owner.

Christy Gardner is a retired Army Sergeant who lost both of her legs in an attack while she was serving overseas. When she returned home to her home in Lewiston, Maine, she got Moxie to help with her daily tasks.

What Gardner did not anticipate, however, is how the retriever would help pull her out of deep depressions and keep her from turning to suicide.

“She’s absolutely been a life saver. Quite literally,” Gardener told CBS News. “That dog saved my life.”

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The 36-year-old veteran has felt so grateful to her canine companion, she wanted to somehow repay the debt to Moxie, which is why she has now turned into the caregiver for a puppy named “Tiny Tim”.

Disabled with leg that doesn’t work, just like his new trainer, the puppy is being trained by Gardner to become a therapy dog at a local elementary school. She believes the physically-challenged pup, now named Lucky, can make students feel good about being different.

However, the puppy’s misshapen paw needed to be amputated, and Gardner picked up several new jobs so she could pay for the surgery.

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She won’t need to work so hard anymore, because Gardner’s compassionate labor of love inspired pet food company Vetriscience to lend a helping hand—and donate $10,000.

If you want to follow Lucky’s journey, you can check out his Facebook page or the company’s Twitter feed.

(WATCH the news coverage below *For our international viewers, watch the video on the CBS News website) – Photo by Vetriscience

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