The Kellihan Clan

Meet the Brady Bunch of the animal world: the dogs and cats of the Kellihan family


1. Wheezer: Australian cattle dog, 9yo
2. Brady: Australian cattle dog, 7yo
3. Foofa: Rat terrier/papillon/chihuahua mix, 3yo
4. Ulla: Doberman/German shepherd mix, 8yo
5. Zero: white domestic shorthair (DSH), 9yo
6. Squid: orange tabby American curl cat, 7yo
7. Bernadette: calico DSH, 8yo
8. Elliot: brown tabby DSH, 6yo


Heidi Kellihan, veterinary cardiologist at UW Veterinary Care; Catherine Kellihan, emergency-room nurse; Liam Kellihan, five-year-old superstar; and Maeve Kellihan, 13-month-old princess.

How did you come to have so many dogs and cats?

They all found us. Most of our crew has health issues that brought us together. Wheezer has bad lung disease and wasn’t supposed to survive. Brady was severely abused. Ulla had a difficult home situation and multiple health issues. Zero was three-legged, tailless, homeless, feline leukemia virus +, and we mutually needed each other. We were waiting for an “orange boy” to come into our lives, and Squid presented himself to us as a kitten with congenital heart disease. Bernadette came to us in heart failure and now she is PERFECT. Elliot came to us because he lost his eye to trauma as a kitten and he had a cardiac arrest after surgery. Foofa is the only one that didn’t come from special circumstances. Liam found her, and they are best friends.

How do the pets meet your needs?

They are all a part of our lives. They provide us with warmth. Literally—we require no blankets in bed with four dogs, two adults, and the occasional five-year-old who sneaks in during the night.

How do you meet their needs?

Lots of food. Love. A king-sized bed. A minivan.

If cats could talk, what would yours say?

“Fewer dogs needed” (except Squid).

If dogs could talk, what would yours say?

“Fewer kids needed” (mainly voiced by the cattle dogs) and
“I can’t wait to escort you to the bathroom!” (again, mainly voiced
by the cattle dogs)

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