Minnesota Teen Expands Efforts to Build Wheelchairs for Disabled Animals From All Over the Globe

By Peyton Phillips October 7, 2021
A 16-year-old high schooler from Minnesota is building wheelchairs for animals in need — from paralyzed dogs to wounded ducks.

Shaine Kilyun is helping change the lives of animals in need of mobility assistance one wheelchair at a time. Currently, she is building a wheelchair for a paraplegic dog in Saudi Arabia. “I just love animals, and I wanted to make a difference somehow,” the 16-year-old from Minnesota told Fox 9. “I’ve saved a few lives, and I really hope to save more.”

Kilyun attends Champlin Park High School and spends her free time building the wheelchairs. “I’ve made about 10, and I’m actually going to be making one for a duck,” she said. 

In her latest project, Kilyun constructed a wheelchair for a dog from Saudi Arabia whose back legs are paralyzed. The two-year-old dog is named Scooter due to having to scoot around, and he has begun developing sores and lesions where his legs scrape the ground, increasing the risk of infection.

Lisa Leverdiere, who works with the nonprofit Home For Life Animal Sanctuary, said it can be difficult to raise enough money for wheelchairs like these. “It’s very hard to raise money in these times. So for her to make not one cart but two carts for us probably saved us close to $1,000,” said Leverdiere.

Kilyun raises money to cover the costs of each wheelchair. “A lot of people have reached out and donated, which is just incredible,” she said. To donate to the effort, you can donate via Zelle to Wheeliesdogwheelchairs.com

Image source: Fox 9