Dog with cancer checks off last bucket list item

Cody - A dog that is dying of cancer checked one important item off his bucket list in Cody. Skillet the Pit Bull got to ride in the Fourth of July Parade. He's been helping raise money for the Park County Animal Shelter.

Skillet the Pit Bull has been in and out of the Park County Animal Shelter since 2011.

Shelter Manager Valerie Swensrud said, "He had a couple of homes in the span of eight years...they did not work out."

In 2017, Skillet was diagnosed with cancer.

Swensrud said, "And we felt that the best place was here, with the people that love him the most."

The staff made a bucket list for the white pit bull.

She said shelter supporters helped fulfill Skillet's bucket list:

"He had a spa day…. He's had some kids come in and read to him."

One item depended on the sick dog's health:

Swensrud teared up as she described the last item on the list: "And be in the fourth of July Parade. And I really hope he makes it to that."

A month later, early on the fourth, the shelter staff loaded up some dogs to take to the parade.

It would be the first parade for the shelter and its animals in many years.

Swensrud remarked, "We haven't been in the parade since I've been here."

She put Skillet in the front seat of the car but warned if the weather got too hot, the sick dog might have to stay inside where it was air conditioned.

The parade featured patriotic displays, Wyoming's Governor, bands, a very tall Uncle Sam, big beautiful horses, little horses, and several Buffalo Bill Cody impersonators.

Finally came the Park County Animal Shelter float, with its mascot: Skillet the Pit Bull riding outside.

Swensrud later remarked, "He did fantastic. He barked at some horses and some Llamas. His fan club was yelling his name, so it's pretty awesome."

She said the other dogs got lots of attention too, and they may get forever homes from their walk on the parade route.

She said, "I hope so, There were a lot of people asking questions.

One of the Shelter's board members sent out an online funding request to build a new Shelter building. She used Skillet as the funding mascot. The Shelter Board has raised nearly two million dollars for the new construction.

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