(NEWS10) — Losing a pet is never easy. When that furry friend has spent almost every moment with you, it’s nearly impossible. Here is a special man, who is facing his own loss with courage and wisdom.
If time could stand still, being in the water is the place you’d wish it so for Brendan and Khyber.
“For all the hours of his entire life – over 95 percent of them – he’s been within 10, 15 feet of me,” Brendan said.
The duo met 10 years ago when Brendan was a graduate student in Canada and heard there was a puppy being abused in a drug house. He knocked on the door.
“I went to pick him up,” Brendan recalled. “I figured at least if I don’t keep the dog at least I can get him out of there.”
Khyber jumped in his arms and never left.
Working as an environmental scientist, they’re inseparable. From the deepest of rivers to the top of the world. And as a professional photographer, Brendan captures every breathtaking moment.
NEWS10 ABC anchor John Gray found them on a remote island – Khyber’s Disneyland. His last chance to be a puppy again.
On July 3, Brendan’s partner, Shelley, was rubbing Khyber’s belly before bed and found a lump. Tests showed inoperable cancer, and he may have only had days to live.
“To live the rest of his life, just wallowing in sorrow is, um, not what we wanted to do,” Brendan said.
So instead, Brendan started “Bonus Days.” Every day on Facebook, he’d post how many days Khyber has been with him and how many bonus days since the diagnosis.
“It’s about making sure he has fun for the remaining days he has left.”
And boy did he.
“We got to go hiking together; we make sure he goes swimming, paddling; all things he loves doing.”
He also inspired thousands of followers to look at their own lives and appreciate every kiss.
Life is water not stone. Moving, changing, carrying us to treasures just beyond the horizon.
And sometimes it’s hard.
The best you can hope for is to share the journey with a friend.
“We forget that we should treat every day as a bonus day with the people we love or the animals we love. Each additional day we can tell we’re getting closer to whatever the end is, we don’t know where it’s gonna be, but we’re also more and more thankful that we got another day with him.”
They say all dogs go to heaven, but Khyber would tell you, he’s already been there.
You can continue to follow Brendan and Khyber’s “Bonus Days” HERE.