FOX 5 I-Team: A Wheelchair for Keyla - FOX 35 News Orlando

FOX 5 I-Team: A Wheelchair for Keyla

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We have a "Call for Action" success story with a twist.

A dog owner had an unusual request: Could our all-volunteer group help her dog get a wheelchair? It's a bit out of the realm of what they do, but they asked if we could all maybe check our sources for people who might be able to help. And, boy, did that do the trick.

Here's the back story:

Susan Lancaster's 10-year-old German Shepherd Keyla is having trouble in her old age walking on her own but help arrived.

Lisa Bedenbaugh, an animal therapist, fitted Keyla with a very expensive wheelchair. It didn't work the first try, but the Fox 5 cameras were there when the dog's owner tried again.

"Come on Keyla! That's what I'm talking about," exclaimed Susan Lancaster with pure joy. Keyla was up and walking.

This success story comes from social media doing what it sometimes does best - connecting strangers. Susan Bowie, the "Call for Action" director, asked friends to ask around to see if anyone had a used doggie wheelchair. Well, Fox health reporter Beth Galvin posted something to Facebook. And she got an answer.

 

Bedenbaugh said, "Eddie's Wheels out of Massachusetts donated the cart. They recommended me getting involved...."

She works for North Georgia Veterinary Specialist and rehabs animals. The Massachusetts group had a large dog pass and sent it on free of charge to Keyla to use.

Then, I posted something on social media. My friend Poncho Wilson got back really quickly offering his help because these dogs are special to him.

"Growing up as a kid I was an only child, and my protector and older brother, if you will, was a German Shepherd named Whiskey. It'll be the 10th year of her passing this year, and it's another way to honor my mom," said Poncho Wilson, owner of Big Ring Media.

The news kept spreading. He told his friend Dan Sturm who just happens to train, none other than, German Shepherds.

(Dana Fowle: When you walked in and saw Keyla you saw an old lady who needed assistance didn't you?) Absolutely. I was more than honored to help her get back to where she could move around, be with her owner, and enjoy the rest of her life," remarked Copper Creek DVG trainer Dan Sturm.

Together they bought a pricey harness so that Susan Lancaster, who is quite tiny, could lift Keyla into her harness.

Getting her dog on her feet again is really important to Lancaster. Keyla, she says, jumped in many times to protect her during a bad relationship. Her four-legged pal even went with her to hide out at battered women's shelters, so she had no intention of letting her down.

Teary she said, "You been there for me baby girl and I'm gonna be there for you. That's what it's all about."

Again, this isn't exactly what "Call for Action" does day in and day out, but we're glad they did it on this day. If you'd like to volunteer or have a problem, contact the group through the MyFoxAtlanta website.

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