Anyone who as ever shared a bond with a dog will relate to this viral story of love and loss. Gregg Favre, a former St. Louis Fire Captain, recently said goodbye to his best friend of over a decade. His dog, Bella, was diagnosed with cancer four months ago. When her fight came to an end, Gregg was there to hold her in his arms. The emotional message he shared on Twitter doesn't have a happy ending, but it's a testament to the incredible relationship between dogs and the people who love him.
In a series of tweets, Favre shares the story of how he rescued Bella 11 years ago while serving on the St. Louis Fire Department. From the moment he saw her, the pair became inseparable. He wrote,
"We've had dogs in and around our family my whole life. They are all loved and special in their own ways. But the bond that Bella and I had together was incredible. We could communicate with glances and head nods. My wife would joke that it felt like we were ganging up on her."
For years, Gregg and Bella were always together. They went on thousands of walks and hikes, and Bella often traveled with the family on exciting adventures. When life got tough, Bella was always there. She was a pillar of reassurance and love no matter what was happening. Gregg wrote,
"She was always grounding. Always loyal."
Like many pup parents, Gregg said he could go on forever with stories and pictures of his fur baby. He said she was "funny, brave, and tender." He celebrated her life by making people smile, laugh, and cry. Above all, Gregg's Twitter message related to people on a personal level. Whether it was a fellow dog lover reading his tweets or not, he wanted to share an overall message about love and loss.
"My point to all of this is that love and loss go hand in hand. Bella and I made the most of our time and I hope that in your life, you are cultivating your own brand of joy."
For years, Gregg and Bella were family. They loved each other unconditionally, and when Bella's time came, they handled it like they did everything else--together. Gregg held his dog in his arms as she passed away, and while he knows life will never be the same without his best friend, he finds comfort in knowing he made the most of the time they had.
Since Gregg made his heartfelt tweets, dog lovers everywhere have responded. The thread has been liked more than 50,000 times and retweeted more than 6.5 thousand times. Over 3,000 people have left comments expressing their condolences and sharing their own stories of loss.
To conclude his Twitter thread, Gregg told everyone he donated Bella's leftover cancer medications to Stray Rescue in St. Louis for "other families who might not be able to afford the prescription."
After you've wiped away your tears, go ahead and find your dog. Scratch their ears, rub their belly, go for a walk, and remember, tomorrow isn't guaranteed. Show your pup how much they mean to you so when their time comes, you know you spent your time together wisely.
All images via Twitter/Gregg Favre