When Bill Hogencamp received his diagnosis of incurable cancer in May, the 84-year-old retired architect was told he wouldn’t survive the winter. Despite that diagnosis, Bill chose treatment and even adopted a little stray puppy that his wife saved from almost being run over. And now that Hogencamp has received what even doctors can’t explain as a complete recovery from his cancer, both he and his wife Kathy credit the little rescued dog’s devotion and love for his Christmas miracle, reported ABC News.
When Bill originally learned that he was dying from incurable cancer of the gall bladder, liver, colon, and abdomen lining, the father of seven felt grief-stricken when he learned that his doctors didn’t even expect him to make it to Christmas. But he resigned himself to his death.
“I thought if this is it, then this is it.”
Despite that diagnosis, however, Hogencamp decided to be treated. About a week after his surgery to remove three big tumors, Bill was waiting for his wife at the nursing facility. And it was on her way to pick him up when she noticed a tiny white dog trapped between two lanes of heavy traffic.
Although Kathy knew that she would be late, she felt moved to rescue the little dog. And the small pooch seemed to sense her compassion.
He walked past six other cars right up to the side of my car and put his paws up on the door.
Bill was hesitant at first to accept the dog’s love.
“I hadn’t had a dog in twenty years and I had no desire to have a dog,” admitted the now devoted dog owner. “I kept saying we need to find his owner.”
But no owner could be found. A vet visit revealed that the 6-year-old Maltese had not been chipped, although he was neutered.
And so that stray little white dog, named Mahjong, became devoted to Bill. When he sat down, Mahjong rushed over and hopped into Bill’s lap. If Bill napped, Mahjong jumped over to cuddle with him.
And when Bill returned home after exhausting rounds of chemotherapy, Mahjong was always waiting to do the doggy dance of joy, hopping up and down to show his excitement that the human he loved had come home. As shown below, Maltese dogs are known for their loving natures.
Before Christmas, Bill’s doctors were bewildered but delighted to give him the news of a miracle that they can’t explain. He is completely cancer-free.
But Kathy and the family believe that some of the credit goes to Mahjong the Maltese. In the midst of Bill’s misery and knowledge that he was dying, the tiny stray dog gave him something to love, to care for, and to delight in. And the dog returned Bill’s affection with complete and utter devotion, says Kathy.
“The dog seemed to know right away that Bill was sick and it was his job to take care of him — and Bill knew it was his job to take care of the dog.”
As for Bill? He sums up his recovery simply.
“My life has been a miracle. And now Mahjong is part of that miracle.”
And Bill isn’t the only person to believe in the healing power of dogs. At Olympic Medical Center, a big black Labrador named Trevor has devoted much of the past five years to welcoming patients. The staff members also appreciate the cheerful love that they receive from the certified therapy dog, reported the Peninsula Daily News.
Trevor belongs to 80-year-old volunteer Monte Mogi, who is a retired Air Force master sergeant and trained the dog since he was a puppy. Labs and lab mixes often are used as therapy dogs, as shown.
Kathy Coombes, volunteer coordinator for the medical center, explained why Trevor is so beloved by staff, patients, and visitors.
“Trevor has heart. He makes everyone feel like he is your best friend. He makes everyone feel good.”
As the Inquisitr reported, the healing, helpful bond that humans experience with animals extends to soldiers overseas. A group called the Puppy Rescue Mission has been involved for years in helping soldiers reunite when they return home with the working war dogs as well as local dogs or cats that they loved.
“The love that bonds between these humans and animals is huge.”
[Photo By China Photos/Getty Images]