A Fearless Kid, a Facebook Post, and a Friendship for the Ages

Illness made him feel isolated until Logan wagged his way into the picture.

every gift saves lives

every gift saves lives

Quinn + Logan

I was wrapping up my day, making dinner and getting settled in, when my phone alerted me that a friend had tagged me in a post on Facebook. It was a video from an animal welfare organization in Sacramento. As the video about a sweet and playful pit bull named Logan played, my eyes began to water and my heart raced. Logan just had one of his front legs amputated, yet he was bouncing around, playing fetch, and happily greeting children as they walked by. I let the clip play over and over as my mind flooded with thoughts of my son. I knew immediately that we had to go get him.

"It was the day of his big surgery when he told me he wanted a three-legged dog."

My son Quinn, who was 12 years old at the time, had been asking for a dog for nearly two years. But not just any dog: a dog with three legs. You see, my son had one of his legs amputated as well. When he was 10, Quinn lost his right hip and leg to Osteosarcoma (bone cancer). It was the day of his big surgery when he told me he wanted a three-legged dog. At the time, I thought he was just being silly. Oh no. He was very serious, and he never let me forget!

So here I was, almost two years after his special request, trying to figure out how to bring Logan home. The next day, I picked Quinn up from school early and we drove straight to Front Street Animal Shelter to meet Logan. That dog had so much love to give! He was so perfect for Quinn. Lots of tears were shed that afternoon. Happy tears, of course.

I think back to that day, and I think in the moment I was trying to give my son something to brighten his days, something that he so very much deserved after everything he had been through. Yet, I never could possibly have imagined how having Logan would completely transform him. Going through cancer treatment as a child is an extremely isolating experience, and now Quinn is never alone. Not only does he always have Logan by his side, but he feels as if he has someone who actually knows what he’s experienced and what he continues to face. As he says, “Logan just gets me.”

Now Quinn is more confident and positive. And with the help of Logan, after having battled cancer twice and enduring things that no child should, he can get back to the business of being a kid—fearlessly!

Each year, the Petco Foundation invites adopters to share the story of how their adopted pet changed their lives during the annual Holiday Wishes campaign, giving the organization that they adopted from a chance to receive a grant award. This story by Teresa Howell won Front Street Animal Shelter in California a 2017 Holiday Wishes award.