Most dogs are a little wary of Scott Meyer's wheelchair at first.
But not Buddy.
The easy-going golden-lab mix took to Meyer and his fiancee, Lynn Zarembinski the moment they met at the Summit County Animal Shelter in Frisco. By the time the couple had walked him around the block, they knew they'd found the newest addition to their family.
"He stayed right by us and was really attentive," Meyer said. "It just seemed like a good fit."
Meyer, a lifelong athlete and now a veteran member of the U.S. Paralympics Alpine Skiing National Team, lost both his legs in a loading dock accident 11 years ago.
"After I was injured there was that void of sports," Meyer said. "A friend of mine was an alpine racer as a kid and he recommended that I take a look at it."
Unwilling to give up his active lifestyle, Meyer moved to Colorado from Wisconsin to learn to ski. Through friends, he met Zarembinski who was in graduate school at Colorado State University and the two later moved to Frisco. They had been talking about adopting a dog for a while and began visiting the animal shelter waiting to meet the right one.
When he arrived, Buddy had seen his share of tough times as well.
The 7-year-old had been through four homes in a matter of months after the elderly woman who had owned him since he was a puppy gave him up, saying she had developed allergies.
After that, Buddy bounced from an animal shelter near the Four Corners to a foster home and back to the rescue before he was transferred up to Frisco.
Sweet natured and affectionate, it didn't take Buddy long to work his way into Meyer and Zarembinski's hearts.
"Within the first week of being at the shelter he found his perfect match," shelter director Lesley Hall stated in an email. "This is one of the many wonderful pet and people matches that we are thrilled to be a part of. We are very thankful that Lynn and Scott were willing to bring an older dog into their lives."
Buddy has been with his new family for approximately a month now.
"He loves to be loved," Zarembinski said. "He just wants to be around us."
With Buddy approaching middle age, they don't expect him to be able to keep up with Meyer on skis but say he'll likely enjoy summer cross-training activities, including biking and kayaking.