Artist Who Saved Dog From Fire Dies From Injuries


Michael James Keenan, a San Francisco artist, risked his life to save a friend’s dog from a fire. Keenan was house and dog sitting for a friend when a fire broke out in the house. He went outside of the house and realized that the dog, Bobby, was still inside the house. He went back in the house and found the 10-year-old Jack Russell terrier hiding under the bed.

Although both Keenan and Bobby escaped the fire, they sustained critical injuries. Bobby was in intensive care at Pets Unlimited, a non-profit veterinary hospital and animal shelter, due to eye damage and swelling.

Keenan sustained burns over 80% of his body. After months in the hospital, Keenan suffered an infection and died of a stroke earlier this week. His friends and family remember him as a hero and a completely selfless human being. Keenan not only saved Bobby’s life, but he saved a woman that was drowning six years ago.

Bobby is doing well after his month of intensive care in the hospital, and Pets Unlimited graciously forgave Bobby’s $26,000 bill.

More on Keenan after the jump.


“He was the kind of guy who would walk into any pub and walk out with 15 friends,” said Owen Kelly, who knew Mr. Keenan since childhood.

“He was a very sparkly being,” said a friend, Stacie Krajchir of Los Angeles. “He had butterfly sense — no time, no boundaries, no rules. If the sun was shining, he’d let the sun kind of lead him.”

Mr. Keenan was heartbroken when his pit bull, a female named Charlie, died a year ago. Friends said they expect some part of Mr. Keenan’s memorial service will be on the beach at Fort Funston, where he used to take Charlie for walks.

8 Responses to “Artist Who Saved Dog From Fire Dies From Injuries”

  1. Lynne says:

    God bless him.

  2. High Note says:

    If more people were like Keenan there would never have been a pet food problem on this earth. Wish there were more wonderful people like Michael James Keenan.

  3. Jenny Bark says:

    Mr. Keenan is now with God & Charlie and having a wonderfull time & no pain. What a gift to this world this man was.

  4. Helen says:

    They should rename that animal hospital after this selfless hero.

  5. Pit Bull Lover says:

    What a wonderful yet devastating story. I’m saddened to know this brave, kind, man is no longer gracing the earth.

    Here is a picture of him with Charlie, the pit bull:

  6. Debbie4747 says:

    Bless him for caring so much and doing what he could in life. I tried looking up some of his artwork but only came up with articles about him and the fire or his passing.
    I hope he is resting easy now, what a hero he was!

  7. Carolyn says:

    The courage and compassion of this man are awe inspiring. I hope now that Bobby makes a full recovery — great that his intensive care bill has been forgiven. Seems a fitting way to honor Keenan’s selflessness.

  8. Sandy says:

    God bless him. I wish everyone was like him.

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