A high school student from Minnesota uses all her spare time to build makeshift wheelchairs for disabled animals, making it her mission to help as many immobile animals as she can.
Just two years prior to creating her organization, 16-year old Shaine Kilyun watched some YouTube tutorials and went on to develop wheelchairs via trial and error. What happened after that was one incredible enterprise that has grown into something extraordinary, building hand-crafted pet wheelchairs for animals that would otherwise be euthanized.
Kilyun uses all her spare time to build these devices to change the lives of these animals. She explained to FOX-9, “I just love animals, and I wanted to make a difference somehow. I’ve saved a few lives, and I really hope to save more.”
Her enterprise is called Wheelies Dog and Cat Wheelchairs, and her IG account says that it offers “custom, handmade, and low-cost wheelchairs for specially-abled dogs, cats & pets.” Moreover, her business only charges for the cost of materials, and not her own personal time and attention.
Most of the time, it costs around $1,000 for these types of devices usually created for larger-breed dogs, while Kilyun’s devices cost around $300 only.
Since she first began her venture, she was able to build around one dozen front-support, full-support, and back-support mobility models, all depending on what each of the animals’ needs were. She has built a device for a dog as big as a Great Dane from Oregon, as well as another one for a tiny Chihuahua that lives in Ohio.
Aside from the creating these wheelchairs for the cats and dogs, she’s also shared that she’s made some for other animals. In fact, she’s done a one-of-a-kind device for a hedgehog. And she also shared with FOX-9 about another one that she built, sharing, “I’ve made about 10, and I’m actually going to be making one for a duck.”
Kilyun has since expanded her aid to shelter pets too. In fact, she met a paraplegic dog that was flown from Saudi Arabia to the United States via Home For Life Animal Sanctuary. This particular organization works towards giving dogs that are considered unadoptable another chance at life. Scooter, as the dog is called because he scoots around due to his paralyzed back legs that drag on the ground which make him susceptible to wounds and infections, now has a new lease on life after Kilyun made him his makeshift wheelchair.
According to Lisa Leverdiere of the Home For Life Animal Sanctuary nonprofit, she shares how Kilyun’s work has been more than helpful for their rescue animals, especially during these extra difficult times when raising money is that much harder.
Moreover, Kilyun is determined to continue her efforts, and she notes the generosity of others that allow her to do so. She told FOX-9, “A lot of people have reached out and donated, which is just incredible.”
For those that want to donate to Kilyun and her amazing cause, they can send their donations to [email protected] via Zelle.
Watch her inspirational story here.
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