There’s nothing sweeter than the love between a boy and his dog. Dogs are always willing to step up and help their young owners when they’re in need, and kids will do the same for their beloved pets.
And pets also teach kids about responsibility. Never was that more apparent than the story of one little boy, who took the initiative to make a sacrifice for his best friend when his family had to pay for a surgery.
Bryson Kliemann is an 8-year-old boy from Lebanon, Virginia, who loves playing with his puppy, Bruce. But recently, Bruce fell seriously ill.
“He wasn’t coming out of his cage and being the normal puppy he usually is,” his mother Kimberly Woodruff told WCYB. “He was very lethargic, just not doing good.”
After being taken to the vet, the dog was diagnosed with parvo — a serious and contagious virus among dogs. Unfortunately, treatment would cost $700, a price the family would have trouble paying.
“We currently have enough money for Bruce to stay in the vet hospital for a total of 3 days,” Kimberly wrote. “But myself and the vet are very worried that he may need longer treatment. Between May 3rd and May 4th our baby had already lost 5 pounds over night.”
Realizing this, young Bryson took an inspiring initiative to help pay for the surgery: selling his Pokemon cards.
“I know everybody likes Pokémon cards so I just decided to sell them,” Bryson told WCYB.
Like many kids, Bryson loves collecting and playing with the collectable cards. He can often be found sitting on the floor with the cards laid out in front of him, looking at his favorite characters.
But parting with fictional pets like Pikachu and Squirtle was worth it if it meant saving his dog, who has been his most loyal playmate.
“It made me kind of sad because usually my brother and sister play together and I don’t have anybody to play with. So, I usually play with him,” Bryson said.
The heartwarming gesture took his mom by surprise; she only found out after someone sent her a photo of Bryston outside at his card stand.
Bryson says he made $65 in the first day of sales — an impressive total for a kid selling Pokemon cards, but sadly not enough to fund the surgery.
However, the family soon set up a GoFundMe page. As Bryson’s selfless act went viral, donations came pouring in (and thankfully, Bryson didn’t have to exchange any more Pokemon to raise the money.)
The fundraising page has now made over $5,300 dollars, far surpassing the $800 goal and more than enough to fund Bruce’s surgery.
“I want to thank everyone for all of their love and support for my baby and his fur baby,” Kimberly wrote on GoFundMe. “Bruce is now home with his family. He is doing great but still in recovery.”
The rest of the money raised will be used to vaccinate Bruce from further medical issues, and to help other dogs in the area.
Since Bryson’s story went viral weeks ago, there’s been some inspiring updates.
According to WSLS, employees from the Pokémon Company in Bellevue, Washington got word of the heartwarming gesture, and decided to reward Bryson by sending him some free Pokémon cards to make up for the ones he sold.
But not just any cards — they sent him rare, valuable cards that are hard to find in stores.
“Hey Bryson, we were so inspired by your story about selling your cards for your dog’s recovery, these are some cards to help you replace the ones you had to sell,” they wrote in a letter, according to WSLS.
Pokemon cards, which originally became a fad in the late ’90s, have seen a huge surge in new popularity recently, and rare cards are now at their peak value (to the point where department stores have reportedly had to protect themselves from overzealous fans.) Bryson’s collection is now worth more than ever.
And most importantly, his dog is now home safe, thanks to the funds Bryson helped bring in for his family.
“He has more vaccine appointments, but he’s doing great, like amazing,” Kimberly told WSLS.
“I’m happy he’s home, and I’m proud of myself,” Bryson said. “Now my brother and sister are playing with him too, and now I’m really playing with him pretty often.”
Thank you to Bryson for looking after your puppy. It’s always so heartwarming to see the lengths kids will go for their dogs.
And what a happy ending — we’re so glad that Bruce is home, and Bryson was rewarded with great new Pokemon cards!
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