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Illinois Man Battling Cancer Finds a Companion in Adopted Dog

While battling cancer, Riley, a rescued dog, became his companion

Palos Heights resident Mark Johnson says his adopted dog was sent from heaven. While battling cancer, Riley, a rescued dog, became his companion.

The day after a surgery, Johnson met Riley and found her to be different from the dogs he had owned in the past. Johnson said Riley does not bark and provides a calming presence in his home.

“She’s the most fantastic dog on the planet,” Johnson said.

Riley, who Johnson describes as a 15-pound fur ball, was rescued by “I Wanna Go Home Rescue.” The dog was found being chased by a pit-bull and Johnson says he can still see signs of Riley’s past as a stray dog.

“I have no idea what her past was like, but I know her future is great,” he said.

Johnson is now in remission and continues to do everything with Riley. He said having a dog has helped him in so many ways.

“We are two peas in a pod,” he said.

NBC’s Clear the Shelters will take place on Aug. 19. “I Wanna Go Home Rescue” is one of the participating shelters.

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