National Rare Disease Day: Ty & GummyBear

Ty and GummyBear
Ty & GummyBear

Today is National Rare Disease Day, and we’d like to take this opportunity to highlight one of the children we serve who suffers from a rare condition.

When Ty was two months old he was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, a life-threatening disorder that damages the lungs and digestive system. His companion dog GummyBear was adopted in December 2015 through the Stink Bug Project and since then has become an integral part of his treatment and overall well being.

Ty and GummyBear
Ty and GummyBear during vibration vest therapy.

As part of his treatment, Ty undergoes vibration vest therapy twice daily, which requires him to sit with an inflatable vest on for 20 to 30 minutes at a time. During these sessions, GummyBear lays on Ty’s lap and is a comforting distraction as the vest vibrates his chest to loosen and thin mucus. Exercise is also an important part of treatment, and GummyBear encourages Ty to get outside for daily walks and playtime. GummyBear knows his role within the family and always stays close to Ty, and can even sense when he isn’t feeling well.

We are thrilled to share the positive impact GummyBear and the Stink Bug Project have had on Ty and his family, and look forward to sharing the stories of many other children who have benefited from our programs. Your support enables us to help children like Ty live their life to the fullest. Thank you!



Founded in 2011 and based in Seattle, Washington, Rover is a trusted community where people can find, list, and book neighborhood dog lovers who can’t wait to watch their dog.

Their program, Sit a Dog, Save a Life™, lets dog sitters pick a charity to receive a percentage of their proceeds.  The Stink Bug Project is one of the programs that dog sitters can pick.  Look for Rover sitters who have the Rover Donation Badge and help support the Stink Bug Project!



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