Ra Hayes and Coopers Story
Ra Hayes rescued this sweet boy when he was 9 years old, not knowing he would one day save her life. When Cooper was finally adopted, he had suffered from starvation for such a long period of time that he displayed hostile behaviors whenever food was present. If someone came close to him while he was eating, Cooper would growl and snap at them. Ra spent weeks working with him, gradually earning his trust to the point where he would sit and wait for permission to eat. He inventively liked the attention of being hand fed and would sit and wait for Ra to hand feed him.
Ra suffers from a wide range of medical conditions, the most significant of which being diabetes. Ra's blood sugar level plummeted dramatically one day, to the point where she becoming unresponsive to her surroundings. Cooper began to behave erratically, running in circles while barking, until the her son came to investigate what was going on. Ra remarked, "That tiny 9-pound ball of fluff saved my life that day just as I had saved his." This experience motivated her to get him certified as a therapy animal so that they could go to hospitals and other facilities, where they could help bring smiles to the faces of people who are struggling and inspire joy in those who are in need of it. Ra had Cooper for 14 wonderful years, which would have made him 22 years old at the time of his passing.
October 2000 till December 5, 2022. Cooper, may you rest in peace
Photo taken by Ra Hayes