The Cranston, Rhode Island community stepped up in fancy footwork Sunday to ensure a boy with autism and his beloved service dog stay together.
Michael Sears, 8, and his pup Gigi have been inseparable since he first got her on Father’s Day. However, the $14,000 cost it takes to keep the duo together is what threatens a potential separation.
"I love her so much," Sears told NBC Affiliate WJAR-TV.
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Gigi is a cancer survivor who was trained to at RyCon Service Dogs in North Carolina. She gives Sears security and safety. The boy’s mother, Elyse, said the two are meant to be together.
Elyse organized a fundraiser at a Zumba class in an effort to cover the costs. Prior to the event, she had never taken a class but was determined to help her son keep his pup. The Zumba class alone raised $900.
The Sears family is accepting online donations to keep Gigi as a service dog. If you would like to help, you may do so here. Be aware that GoFundMe deducts 2.9 percent of any funds raised, plus 30 cents per donation for payment processing charges.