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Special dog visits Paws and Claws booth at flea market

Some of the best things in life come in packages wrapped differently. So it is with Coco, a six-year-old dachshund owned by Dawn Michels of South Windsor, Conn., who visited the Shipshewana Flea Market recently. The owner and her pet also took time to stop at the Paws and Claws Bookstore to share her story.

Coco is one remarkable bundle of determination who has been through an amazing amount of adversity for a little pooch.

It started when Coco injured her back by jumping off the couch in her home when she was three years old, critically injuring her discs between the 11th and 12th vertebrae. The serious injury left her paralyzed with little hope of ever walking again.

The decision was made to do an expensive surgery that would at least give Coco a chance at a normal life. Following surgery, Coco went through months of water therapy and cold laser therapy, along with acupuncture. Finally, after all that, Coco was placed in Connecticut Dachshund Rescue for adoption, where Michels came across the special pet.

Michels feels Coco rescued her rather than the other way around. Already having several dachshunds and a Yorkie with special needs, another dog to care for was not a concern to Michels.

Coco now lives with Michels and is referred to as being a “spinal walker” – meaning she now has some range of motion.

Michels had a pair of “wheels” specially made for Coco, which enables the Dachshund to walk and run, keeping up with the best of them.

Don’t tell Coco she is disabled. Although Coco needs special attention, Michels feels she gives her much more than she takes.