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Monday, May 25, 2020

Puppy’s bittersweet bucket list wish fulfilled

By Anelyse Morris

A local celebrity was sighted at Mud Bay on Sunday, Jan. 20. He caused quite a commotion, stirring the attention of local news outlets and people from all over the Northwest. 

While not a famous singer or actor, Logan, a 9-week-old German shepherd puppy, has gathered a following over the last few weeks, captivating people with his adorable face and heartbreaking story.

Diagnosed in the first few weeks of his life with pulmonic valve dysplasia, an inoperable heart condition, Logan was estimated to only have up to a year left to live, according to an interview by KOMO news with his foster mom, Lindie Saenz. 

Saenz is a regular volunteer for Rescued Hearts Northwest, a shelter for at-risk animals. Her 4-year-old son Blake decided to name Logan after Marvel superhero Wolverine, hoping that if he was named after a regenerative superhero, he would be able to heal himself too, according to KOMO. 

Saenz said she wanted Logan’s life to have meaning, no matter how short it may be. Inspired by this, she reached out to Rescued Hearts Northwest to make a bucket list for him.

The organization shared Logan’s story on Facebook and started asking people for bucket list ideas, Bekki Dodd, President of Rescued Hearts Northwest said. The amount of people who wanted to meet him was so overwhelming that they reached out to Mud Bay, a natural pet food store, to stage a meet-and-greet.

Lindie Saenz, right explains the condition of her dog Logan to Devon Alexander, center as he is comforted by Rodger Alexander at a Hugs for Logan Meet and Greet event on Sunday, Jan. 20. // Photo by Oliver Hamlin

“We’re all about community here, so we were more than happy to be a part of it,” Kara Raddatz, store manager at Mud Bay, said.

The goal of the meet-and-greet was to help Logan reach his goal of getting 100 hugs, Dodd said. While the final tally isn’t in yet, the turnout alone was a great indication that the goal would be met. 

“We always wanted his life to matter, and all these people showing him love has just been amazing,” Saenz said. 

The line of people waiting to meet Logan wrapped around the store and out the door. From Bellingham citizens to Oregonians and even Californians, people traveled far and wide to hug Logan.

Renee Showalter and her daughter Callie came to see Logan together after seeing his story all over local news broadcasts. 

“Meeting Logan was really awesome,” Callie Showalter said. “It was so great being part of his story and his short life.”  

Many of the event attendees followed Logan’s story on Facebook from the beginning and jumped at the chance to meet him. The promotional post for the event was published only four days prior to the meet-and-greet and was shared over 200 times. 

Lindsey Hartesroad and Kristen Edwards were strangers when they walked into Mud Bay, but spent the whole time waiting in line talking to one another about their love for animals and their excitement to meet Logan. Hartesroad said that her love for German shepherds and Logan’s story is what drove her to come to the event.

“I was reading all about his bucket list,” Edwards said. “His story truly touched me and I knew I had to come and meet him.” 

Some of his other bucket list items are digging in the sand at the beach, picking out a toy at Mud Bay, going fishing with his foster family and having a camp-out in the backyard, according to KOMO.

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