A Puppy’s Tail

Boy holding a dog at pet store

About a year ago, Cesilia Riquelme was diagnosed with brain cancer. This horrific form of cancer interferes with the brain’s functions such as muscle control, memory, and other normal body functions. The sweet sixteen-year-old teenage girl and her family were devastated when they received such news. 

Not only was this disease difficult for her, but her parents hated seeing how it made their typically high-spirited daughter sad and depressed. Cesilia always wanted a puppy and she desired one even more since she was now fighting for her life. They wanted to give their only child everything they could during such a trying time, but it was difficult. However, they received the amazing news that Make-A-Wish ® Southern Florida wanted to grant her life-changing wish to have a puppy.

“My daughter always wanted a little puppy. This has been an incredibly difficult year and this makes her feel better emotionally and physically. I’m so happy,” said her father Abel.

child sitting on chair with puppy

The non-profit organization coordinated efforts with TeaCups, Puppies, and Boutique in Davie. The boutique pet shop was thrilled to have the perfect companion ready for Cesilia when she arrived. A white Maltese which she affectionately named Rocky was excited to meet his new owner. This breed of dogs is known to be gentle, affectionate, and trusting which is exactly what this teenager needed.

“He’s mine now. I’ve only held other people’s dogs. It’s hard to believe. I cannot wait to spend time with him. I don’t know if I would have ever gotten him without Make-A-Wish,” exclaimed Cesilia.

With more than seven months of intense treatment done, Cesilia was excited to start a new chapter in her life with a forever friend to be by her side as she continues to navigate cancer and all the treatments ahead.

“The wishes we grant aren’t just nice, they’re necessary. Research shows the anticipation of a wish and memories made during them can have a positive and significant impact on the health and well-being of the children, families, and extended networks we reach,” explained Norman Wedderburn, President & CEO, Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida.