YARCHIE the black Labrador has proved without doubt that a dog is man's best friend.
The two-year-old pooch adores his owner Becky Andrews – and he is indispensable as well.
From picking up things from the floor to getting clothes out of the washing machine, there's nothing he won't do for Becky, who has cerebral palsy and is in a wheelchair.
Now she and best friend Lucy Gooding will take on the 5km Santa fun run on December 1 at Cirencester's Bathurst estate, in aid of Canine Partners to say thank you for the faithful assistance dog.
Since the national charity matched the marvellous mutt with Becky, 31, from Up Hatherley, it's given her a new lease of life. "Yarchie's amazing – he's beautiful, has an angelic face and is so eager to please with a tail that's always wagging," said the fully qualified teacher.
"I'm an animal-lover and always wanted my own dog but because of my disability knew it would be tricky to look after one that hadn't been trained.
"Yarchie is the answer – an amazing friend and a true help. He takes my shoes on and off, opens and closes doors and picks things up like my purse and keys as well as often getting the remote from under the bed.
"When we go shopping he'll pass things down from the shelves. Everyone loves him and everyone wants to know more about the charity."
The two pals aim to raise at least £100 each from the fun run for the charity.
"I want to do it because of what it's given me and what a difference a dog can make to my life in so many different ways," said Becky.
Lucy, 25, from Bishop's Cleeve, is training to be a veterinary nurse at Folly Garden vets at Tewkesbury.
She added: "Since Becky was matched with Yarchie she's become a different person – her confidence has grown so much. She recently entered a dressage competition and came 4th and 6th.
"She's my best friend so I want to help."
The friends and Yarchie will all don Santa suits for the event.
To sponsor them visit www.justgiving.com/lucyandbecky or text donations by texting Yarc99 £1 to 70070.