A rare heart condition and a need for the same surgery brought together a teenage girl and her rescue dog Annie, a pit bull and Siberian Husky mix.

Early in the pandemic during lockdown, 15-year-old Avery and her mother Nicki Mikolai decided to foster dogs at their home in Plymouth, Minn. The pair came across Annie, who had been abandoned at a Kentucky farm, on rescue organization No Dog Left Behind’s website and thought she would be a good fit for their family.

A few days after arriving at her new home, Annie visited the vet, who determined that she has pulmonary stenosis, a condition Avery received surgery for just hours after she entered the world. Annie needed the same procedure to widen her narrowed pulmonary artery.

“That’s just when you kind of know it’s meant to be and we had to keep her,” Avery told KARE11.  “Whe’s my dog and I’m happy to have her.”

Coincidence or not, the special connection between Avery and Annie reminds us that sometimes, we have more in common with animals than we tend to realize.