Jill Layton
Updated January 05, 2015

Thousands (yes thousands) of dogs have united to cheer up one special animal-loving teenager in Phoenix. Last summer, 16-year-old Anthony Lyons was diagnosed with lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). As a result, he’s currently undergoing chemotherapy as an inpatient at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. His family and friends noticed that Anthony is happiest when the hospital’s therapy dogs pay him a visit, but unfortunately, the dogs aren’t able to come by every day.

So, a friend of the family took matters into her own hands, and created a Facebook event page with the following request:

“Hi all, my friend Kristen Lyons has her son Anthony at Phoenix Children’s hospital. Some days he gets doggy visits and some he does not. They make him smile. I thought if I create this event, you can post a picture of your dog to help make him smile. His mom shows them to him and he smiles.”

The page has been up for just one week, and already has 833,000 members. People from all over the world have posted pictures of their dogs, along with messages of support for Anthony. Some people even sent pictures of their cats to ensure the maximum amount of smiles.

Anthony’s mom, Kristen Lyons, wrote a message thanking everyone for participating:

“I am amazed at how quickly this event has blown up and it makes me so happy to know how many people enjoy their pets as much as Anthony and I do. Your pets have brightened our days so much and it just shows you the power of pet therapy and animal healing. This just shows what great people animal lovers are and we are really feeling the love from you and your pets in this difficult time. Thank you all so much from the bottom of our hearts.”

So doggone sweet. When the people of the Internet come together for a good cause, it’s pretty incredible what can happen. Take a look at some of the photos and messages the doggies sent to Anthony:

Featured images via