Lady Gaga’s dog walker, who was shot during a robbery involving her two dogs on Feb. 24, is on the mend. Ryan Fischer shared photos from his hospital bed and a long statement.
UPDATE: (4/29/21, 4:50 pm ET): Police have arrested multiple individuals who they allegedly tried to dognap Lady Gaga’s two French bulldogs and shot her dog walker in February, according to TMZ. Of the suspects who are in custody, one of them is a woman who allegedly “found” the dogs, for which Gaga promised a $500,000 reward. Law enforcement initially believe that the incident was connected to a gang initiation, but have since discovered that it may be tied to a dog-stealing ring.
UPDATE: (3/1/21, 11:45 am ET) — Ryan Fischer, the dog walker of Lady Gaga, who was shot during a robbery that resulted in her two French bulldogs being kidnapped, released his first public statement since the February 24 incident. In a lengthy two-part post, shared to Instagram on March 1, Fischer thanked his supporters and sent a message directly to Gaga. “… your babies are back and the family is whole… we did it!”, he wrote in part. “You have shown so much support throughout this whole crisis to both me and my family. But your support as a friend, despite your own traumatic loss from your kids, was unwavering. I love you and thank you.”
Read Fischer’s full statement below:
“(1/2) 4 days ago, while a car sped away and blood poured from my gun shot wound, an angel trotted over and laid next to me. My panicked screams calmed as I looked at her, even though it registered that the blood pooling around her tiny body was my own. I cradled Asia as best I could, thanked her for all the incredible adventures we’d been on together, apologized that I couldn’t defend her brothers, and then resolved that I would still try to save them… and myself.
Hopeful that my calm(ish) and forceful pleas for the urgency of my care as well as the focused descriptions of the dogs would be enough to help me and get enough police and media attention to find the boys, I looked backed at my guardian angel. I smiled at her shaking form, thankful that at least she would be okay.
From that point, right as the neighbors poured from their homes and restaurant to us on the sidewalk, life has taken a very sudden and unexpected turn. (Cont.)
(2/2) I am still in recovery from a very close call with death and have kept myself (for the most part, I mean I am human) from the growing media story. I will write and say more later, but the gratitude for all the love I feel from around this planet is immense and intense. I felt your healing support! Thank you. I am humbled and grateful that attention and focus from the police were enough to get Koji and Gustav back to safety, and I know they are committed to bringing these criminals and attempted murderers to justice. I am so appreciative of everything you continue to do.
To all my friends and family who have cried with me and maybe even laughed at one or two of my morbid jokes by my side or over a screen: I love you. Thank you for keeping me grounded now more than ever. And my mom and brother flew out here to be with me…. happy birthday Sean!!!! I love you both with all my heart. All the dog videos and photos from my clients to keep my spirits up worked miracles. Seeing their faces light up when you said my name motivates me to keep pushing so I can play with them and see you again soon. I love you all! First responders and health care workers: you literally saved my life and helped me take newborn walks, I can’t thank you enough. And to Elisha, my family at Haüs and @ladygaga: your babies are back and the family is whole… we did it! You have shown so much support throughout this whole crisis to both me and my family. But your support as a friend, despite your own traumatic loss from your kids, was unwavering. I love you and thank you.
And now? A lot of healing still needs to happen, but I look forward to the future and the moment when I get bombarded with kisses and licks (and maybe even an excitement pee?) from Asia, Koji, and Gustav.”
ORIGINAL: (2/26/21, 1:29 pm ET) — A close friend of Lady Gaga‘s dog walker has confirmed his identity as Ryan Fischer — who LAPD confirmed to HollywoodLife (without naming the victim) was critically injured after being shot during a robbery in Hollywood on Wednesday night. Dr. Fred Pescatore is devastated, he told Entertainment Tonight, after his friend was shot while walking Gaga’s three French bulldogs — two of which, Gustav and Koji, were stolen. The third pup, Asia, managed to break free from the suspects, who fled away in a white vehicle going northbound toward Hollywood Boulevard.
Fischer, who is currently recovering at a Los Angeles hospital, also walked for Pescatore’s pets for seven years in New York. Learn more about the dog walker, whose work ethic was unmatched, according to his friend.
Who is Lady Gaga’s dog walker?
Ryan Fischer wasn’t only a dog walker to Gaga, he was her friend, sources told ET, noting that the singer is absolutely ravaged over the situation. Pescatore explained Fischer’s dedication to his job and the animals he handles.
“He was amazing at it. He could get them to do anything he wanted,” the friend, who said Fischer moved to Los Angeles about four years ago specifically to walk Gaga’s dogs, described his former client. “He would send you videos whenever you were away. He really took care of those dogs like they were his children and they were, I mean, he was unbelievable — kind, kind, gentle man,” Pescatore continued, reiterating that Fischer is a “very kind and gentle soul.” Pescatore, who described Fischer as “amazing” at his job, said he “would literally lay down his life” for those in his care.
After completing his work with Gaga, Fischer was “actually leaving” to pursue another career. “He was actually really an artist,” Pescatore said, explaining, “He was actually leaving the profession in just a few months. He was wrapping up his gig with Gaga and leaving to go and do his artist thing.”
What happened to Lady Gaga’s dog walker?
Fischer was walking Gaga’s three frenchies on the night of February 24, around 9:40 pm LA time, when he was approached by a white vehicle with multiple individuals inside. “LAPD officers from Hollywood division responded to an assault with a deadly weapon radio call involving a shooting at the 1500 block of Sierra Bonita Avenue,” Officer Jeff Lee, PIO for LAPD told HollywoodLife on February 25. “When they arrived they discovered that a male white in his 30s was suffering from at least one gunshot wound.”
The statement explained, “At least one suspect fled the location in a white vehicle north on Sierra Bonita Avenue towards Hollywood Boulevard and he used a semi-automatic handgun during the course of the crime and took two French bulldogs. The suspect and weapon are still outstanding,” the officer continued, noting at the time that “no arrests have been made and the investigation continues.”
It’s unclear exactly what injuries the 30-something-year-old male suffered — though, in police audio from the crime scene, the victim can be heard yelling, “I’ve been shot” and “I’m bleeding out of my chest.” After a bystander called 911, the victim can be heard explaining, “They stole two dogs, they’re Frenchies. They’re Lady Gaga’s dogs.” LAPD confirmed to HollywoodLife that the victim was transported to a local hospital by Los Angeles Fire Department paramedics.
Ryan Fischer is very close with Gaga’s dogs.
“[He was] incredibly close to them. Incredibly,” Pescatore said of Fischer’s relationships to Gustav, Koji and Asia, who are friends with Fischer’s own pup, a beagle named Remington. “I mean, would do anything for them. It’s just heartbreaking and I know he must’ve been absolutely trying to protect them… He would literally lay down his life for any one of our dogs and I certainly hope that that was not the case this time.”
Ryan Fischer has worked for Oprah Winfrey.
Pescatore shared with ET that Fischer’s canine resume includes walking Oprah Winfrey‘s dogs. It’s unclear when he worked for the media icon.
Have Lady Gaga’s dogs been found?
Gaga’s two French bulldogs were safely recovered two days after they were kidnapped. A woman turned the pups into an LAPD station on the night of February 26, HollywoodLife confirmed with an LAPD spokesperson, who said the dogs were “unharmed.”