TAMPA — Bucs safety Logan Ryan had a special guest with him for Tuesday’s news conference at AdventHealth Training Center: Cora, an adoptable dog from the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. The two had met just 30 minutes earlier, and already the 5-year-old terrier mix was sitting on Ryan’s lap.
Cora arrived at the Humane Society nearly three months ago, and Ryan said he wanted to encourage families to adopt her and other dogs through his Ryan Animal Rescue Foundation. Cora’s new owners will receive a $60 gift card to the Humane Society’s retail store, as well as four weeks of free virtual training with GoodPup if Cora is adopted before Friday.
All dogs — not just shelter dogs — need training, Ryan said. That’s why he tried to promote pet retention by offering scholarships for free virtual dog training the last month of training camp. Ryan said he wants to provide a resource for people who can afford a dog but not the training.
“A lot of reasons why people may return their dogs or their dogs don’t work in their household (are) because they don’t train their dogs to be in their household,” Ryan said. “We teach our kids a lot (about) how to work in the household, but we can’t give our kids back. ... I don’t believe you should give your animals back, either.”
Ryan, who signed with the Bucs as a free agent this offseason, said his passion for animal welfare came from his wife, Ashley, who started working at an animal shelter when the two were dating.
Ashley would arrive home from work and brainstorm methods to get the animals adopted. When those ideas didn’t pan out, Ryan said he felt sad, so he started “Ryan’s Monthly Rescue.” Each month, Ryan posts photos with an adoptable dog to his social media pages in hopes of finding them a new family.
That initiative led to the creation of Ryan Animal Rescue Foundation, which partners with animal welfare organizations to promote adoption and provide financial and educational opportunities to improve animals’ lives.
Ryan’s work with animals has followed him throughout career stops in New England, Tennessee, New York and now Tampa.
While with the Titans, he played against Bucs wide receiver Chris Godwin, whose Team Godwin Foundation helps provide second chances to at-risk animals through advocacy and financial support. Their postgame conversation on the field centered around dogs, Ryan said. Maybe, Ryan wondered out loud Tuesday, the players could pair together for an adoption-centric event in the future.
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But Tuesday, his focus was on Cora. Ryan described her as a “beautiful dog” who is extremely active, can accompany people on cross-country hikes and walks, can jog, and loves the heat and being out in the grass.
“Someone go adopt Cora,” Ryan said as he left the news conference. “Great dog.”
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