Cheezcake and Ryan’s Story

keep em together kc

Cheezcake (AKA Cheez, AKA Cheez-whiz, AKA Cheezy) and her mom, Ryan, have had a history of saving each other.

Ryan was working as a crossing guard about 11 years ago when she witnessed a puppy run into the middle of the road. Ryan sprinted to stop traffic so the puppy would not get hit by oncoming vehicles. The puppy was just a few weeks old, so Ryan asked pedestrians if they recognized the pup in hopes to find an owner, but no owner came forward and no one was able to give Ryan any information about where the lone puppy had come from.

Ryan’s shift came to an end, and while she was walking towards her car, she noticed the lone puppy trailing behind her, following Ryan’s footsteps. Before Ryan knew it, the puppy had hopped right into her car as if the puppy was saying, “Okay, lets go home!” It was as if the puppy new that they had found their forever home, and, luckily, that puppy was right.

Ryan and Cheezcake have been together for 11 years now. Their bond growing stronger with every passing year.

For more than a decade Cheezcake (AKA Cheez, AKA Cheez-whiz, AKA Cheezy) and her mom, Ryan have had a history of saving each other. Cheez was right by Ryan’s side through Ryan’s brain surgery, pneumonia, and even a coma. Ryan stepped in for Cheezcake the first day she laid eyes on her, and recently when Cheez suffered several gunshot wounds inflicted by someone walking by their yard.

The family rushed Cheez to their veterinarian’s office where they were able to stabilize her and take x-rays, but unable to provide any further treatment due to the family’s financial insecurity. The lifesaving treatment that Cheez needed seemed beyond reach for them. The family jumped into action, working tirelessly to try to find anyone that could help them get Cheezcake the care she so desperately needed. They reached out to different rescues and animal welfare organizations who were unable to help, but were able to put in a call to KC Pet Project in hopes to connect the family with our Keep ‘Em Together, KC program.

Our team assured Ryan (and Cheez) that we would do everything we could to keep their family together. When they arrived to the shelter, Ryan was so distraught she could barely speak, but we were able to make out how deeply she and her family cared for Cheezcake. Cheez spent 5 days with our veterinary clinic and pet support team. She was treated for three gunshot wounds, received over 60 stitches, and received a front leg amputation. Both Cheez, and her family, were anxious for their four-legged family member to return home.

When it came time for Cheez to return home to continue to heal from her recent surgeries, her family came quickly to retrieve her. Our whole team shared in their eagerness, excitement and anticipation. When they arrived, Ryan was overwhelmed with emotion. The moment that Cheez realized that Ryan had come to her rescue once again, she immediately transformed into a wagging and wiggly ball of uncontrollable kisses for her mom–a completely different dog than what we had seen while in our care. There wasn’t a dry eye in the shelter after seeing how much love was present in this pet family.

Ryan and Cheezcake’s powerful reunification is one that will never be forgotten, and their story is one that illustrates just how important programs like Keep ‘Em Together, KC are to our community.

Thanks to our amazing team and our dedication to honoring the human-animal bond, we were able to provide the services and resources needed to keep ’em together. This life changing and lifesaving program is only made possible by the support of people like you.