As the owner of two dogs (one of whom I’ve had most of my life), I know firsthand how painful it is to even think of losing a pet. That’s why I couldn't help but dissolve into tears when I heard the story of Lauren Fern Watt and her English Mastiff, Gizelle. After Gizelle was diagnosed with terminal bone cancer, Fern Watt decided to make her last remaining months as memorable as possible by taking her pooch on all kinds of bucket list adventures. Warning: you’ll probably need tissues to get through the rest of this story.
In order to make Gizelle’s final days unforgettable, the two embarked on all kinds of fun activities, from riding in a canoe together to sitting on a beach together in winter to visiting Times Square. Gizelle got to enjoy treats usually reserved for humans, like Ben & Jerry's ice cream, and doughnuts. They also went on a road trip, spent whole days in parks, and made other doggy friends. Perhaps the most important activity of all? They cuddled as often as possible.
Along the way, Fern Watt documented their adventures together, sharing some of her favorite moments on her social media accounts. Seeing the touching photos, you can’t help but be reminded just how sweet, profound, and special the relationship between an owner and a pet is.
“Doing a bucket list for Gizelle not only helped me cope with losing her, it was also one wild ride,” she wrote of the experience on Yahoo. “It helped me live in the present and see life for what it truly is: a sweet, simple, precious adventure.”
I think it’s amazing that this dog owner took it upon herself to provide her beloved Gizelle with the most memorable time of her life. Now, excuse me, I gotta go hug my dogs.