“That’s My Puppy. He’s Just Like Me.”

Sapphyre Johnson and Lt. Dan have more in common than just their bubbly personalities and sweet smiles. They both were meant for something special.

Lt. Dan, a nine-week-old white German Shepherd puppy, was born with only one front paw and it was recommended that he be put down. Thankfully, his owner recognized that he was special and that he could serve as a valuable companion for someone going through a similar struggle. Enter Sapphyre…


Sapphyre Johnson is a toddler who lost both feet after she was born with just two toes on each foot. They were amputated at a young age so that she could successfully be fitted for prosthetics. She has been staying at the hospital since she was three months old.

“That’s My Puppy. He’s Just Like Me.”

Lt. Dan’s owner had been looking for the right person to take Lt. Dan, and knew she hit the jackpot when she found Sapphyre. Sapphyre and her family knew that Lt. Dan was the perfect partner for her the first time they saw a picture of him. She immediately recognized their similarities. That cute little puppy and this special young girl were meant to be.

Lt. Dan will help Sapphyre cope with her disability, make friends, and will serve as an icebreaker when explaining her disability to other children. He will be her personal cheerleader, her best friend, and will be motivation to keep her moving and active. The Shriner hospital has also offered to make a prosthetic foot for Lt. Dan when he’s big enough.

See more of their special friendship in the video:

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Alli B. was born and raised in the Great Lakes State. She is a proud dog mom to an adorable mutt named Rue, a three-legged pup named Tripp, and a crazy cat mom to two feisty felines, Louie and Pikachu. She spends her days exploring all that Michigan has to offer with her husband and their fur-babies.