Ryan Felkar has cystic fibrosis and has spent just under a month inside Toronto General Hospital waiting for a double lung transplant, but just over week ago he found out his one-year-old English bulldog may have been taken from his parents’ yard in Watford, Ont.
Felker’s family is now making a desperate appeal for the dog’s safe return.
Jennifer Rombouts, Felkar’s sister, has been by his side at hospital and said sharing the news of the missing dog, Stella, with her sick brother was one of the hardest things she had to do.
“We didn’t want to tell him at first because we thought it would be really hard on him,” she told Global News.
“She was one of the best things that has ever happened to us and she’s gone … He just hopes whoever had her is loving her and we need her back.”
Rombouts said Stella went missing at approximately 3 p.m. on Sept. 12. The family said a report has been filed with police.
The dog was wearing a cone around her head after recently having surgery on her eye.
“She was living with my parents when we were in Toronto and my dad was looking after her,” Rombouts said.
“He let her out to do her normal thing and she never goes far, ever. He just couldn’t finder her… we’ve had crews and crews of people looking everywhere.”
The family said it has put out a reward for her return and they are asking anyone who knows of her whereabouts to contact them by email at email@example.com.
Rombouts said Stella’s return would “lift Ryan’s spirits” and would help him get through the time while he waits for a lung transplant.
“He’s in pain. Every day and every hour is a fight to breathe, so it would give him the extra humph to wait out for those lungs,” she said.