Facebook Doggie Photos Go Viral For Teen With Cancer
We all know there is enough bad news to go around, and that’s why we here at PetGuide love to bring you guys the good, heartwarming stuff when we hear about it. (Spoiler Alert: This is definitely one of those stories.)
Last summer, 16-year-old Anthony Lyons was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia after falling ill while visiting his grandparents in Oregon.
As anyone could imagine, the diagnosis was devastating for Anthony and his parents, and having to quickly begin a difficult course of chemotherapy didn’t make the journey any easier –until, that is, Anthony was introduced to the therapy dog program at Phoenix Children’s Hospital.
Related: Therapy Dogs May Be The Key To Less Stress And Loneliness At Colleges
As anyone with a pet can attest, a snuggle with your favorite critter can brighten even the toughest of days, and Anthony is no exception.
He’s a firm believer that the pet therapy really helps. “I can be in here and having a really bad day and then one of the dogs will show up and it will be the highlight of the day,” says Anthony.
Seeing how happy these visits made Anthony, a family friend turned to Facebook, creating a page called ‘ Photo Doggies for Anthony”, asking people to post pictures of their pooches so Anthony could look at them on the days he didn’t get a visit from the therapy dogs.
Related: Amazing Therapy Dogs Help Diabetics Live Healthier, Happier Lives
Thanks to the power of the internet, the page has gone viral: so far, the page has garnered over 300,000 posts from across America and around the world, including as far away as troops stationed in Afghanistan. (Amazing, right??)
Anthony says that his mom shows him all the pictures when he’s stuck in his hospital bed. He loves seeing pictures of the dogs from far and wide, and says his favorite photos are the funny ones.
Anthony’s mom, Kristen Lyons, is so thankful for the outpouring of support from around the globe: they’ve loved every second of it, she says, and the pictures really brighten Anthony’s days.
If you’d like to post your own doggie picture for Anthony, you can visit the Photo Doggies for Anthony page. Go do it and help make Anthony’s day even brighter!
Currently, Anthony still faces a further three months of chemotherapy. We wish him nothing but the best, and hope he gets all the sloppy puppy kisses he can handle in the meantime.
[Source: Fox 10 Phoenix]
Christina Peden is a lifelong animal lover and avid wordsmith. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend Ryan where they are proud pet parents to puppy, Matilda and cat, Oscar. In her spare time, she can be found enjoying Toronto, Canada's all-too-short patio season, taking advantage of the city's numerous parks or curled up with a good book.
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