A six-year-old maltese is credited with helping saving one man’s life, as he battled incurable cancer.
Back in May, 84-year-old Bill Hogencamp received devastating news: He was diagnosed with cancer of the gall bladder, liver, colon and the lining of his abdomen. The doctors told him it was incurable, and he wouldn’t live to see another Christmas.
Despite the prognosis, in October, Hogencamp decided to move ahead with a procedure to remove three tumors, even when doctors told him it was a waste of his time, money and energy. Eleven days later, his wife, Kathy, was on her way to pick him up from rehabilitation center when she noticed a small white dog wondering in the middle of the road. Even though Kathy was in a hurry, something in her told her to stop.
“He walked past six other cars right up to the side of my car and put his paws up on the door,” she told Good Morning America.
While she was instantly smitten with the little guy, it took her husband a little bit more time to warm up to having a dog around.
“I hadn’t had a dog in twenty years and I had no desire to have a dog,” he said to the outlet. “I kept saying we need to find his owner.”
And they tried, but no one came forward. Soon, the maltese — who they named Mahjong – became Hogencamp’s shadow, following him everywhere. When Hogencamp rested, Mahjong was right there curled up next to him. When he sat down, the maltese was his lap warmer and when Hogencamp returned from being away from the house, Mahjong was excited to see him. It was almost like Mahjong knew what his purpose was in this man’s life. Before long, Hogencamp would also realize why this little dog entered his world.
Just before the holiday season, Hogencamp underwent chemotherapy and after the treatment received unbelievable news: He was cancer free.
While Hogencamp believes the medical treatment played a huge role in this new diagnosis, he does think his new little friend had something to do with it.
“My life has been a miracle,” Hogencamp said to GMA. “And now Mahjong is part of that miracle.”