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Girl Hosts Pet Drive in Memory of Dog’s Christmas Passing


Despite the sorrow of losing her pet dog, Milly Kukuczka is using her story and the festive season to help homeless animals in her neighborhood. The 9-year-old girl experienced the loss of her beloved canine companion around Christmas last year, as reported by CBS Colorado. Bella — her Border Collie mix dog — had been with her since she was a baby.

Ashley Kukuczka — Milly’s mom — expressed how challenging it has been to witness her daughter struggle over the last year. However, this Christmas, Milly made a resolution to extend a helping hand to other pets. “I thought it was sad that pets didn’t have owners, especially around the holidays,” expressed Milly.

Milly’s heartwarming Christmas pet drive

“We asked her for her Christmas list and what she wanted for Christmas and she went in her art room and came out with a flier and wanted to do a pet drive donation,” Ashley said.

Milly’s parents contacted the Denver-based Dumb Friends League, spreading word of the pet drive through social media. They were met with an outpouring of community support.

Ashley stated, “We’ve partnered with our gym and with her school, we’ve set boxes up there.” She continued, “I’m collecting some at my work, my husband’s collecting some at his work.” Milly’s goal is to gather as many food items, toys, and pet supplies as possible. She wishes for a Christmas where every pet without an owner gets to open a gift.

As she inspected a donated bag, Milly mentioned items she hoped to receive: “Treats, and bones, and some food.”

“There’s like 50 toys in there already,” Ashley revealed. She stated that they also have numerous boxes containing treats and cat scratchers, along with approximately five or six dog beds.

At the tender age of 9, Milly is taking on the role of Santa for pets in the shelter. “Even though you’re little you can still make a big difference,” she said.

Ashley added that their aim is to ensure that every pet feels loved, regardless of whether or not they have a home on Christmas.

BackCountry CrossFit — a gym in Littleton, Colorado — is now welcoming donations for Milly’s pet drive. The event will continue through Thursday, Dec. 21. Subsequently, Milly will personally deliver all the collected items to the Denver Dumb Friends League. In so doing, she can ensure the pets receive their presents in time for the holiday season.


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