Chester the dog was thrust into the media spotlight after he was rescued from Animal Ark Rescue in Columbus, Georgia, by Nicole Elliot. Nicole saw Chester’s before-and-after photo on the rescue organizations page indicating that the dog needed hospice care for the last remaining days of his life. Elliot only cared for Chester for a few weeks, but was determined to make those few weeks as amazing as possible for the dying dog. Therefore, she created a bucket list for Chester and tried to mark as many items off of the list as possible before he passed. The result was a collection of heart-warming photographs that show the pooch enjoying a variety of activities from an oatmeal bath to enjoying a famous Nathans hot dog. Now Nicole is hoping that Chester’s final journey can inspire others to foster or adopt rescue animals.
The Daily Mail reports that Chester had an amazing last few weeks of life after being rescued from a “high-kill” animal shelter by Animal Ark Rescue in Columbus, Georgia. Sadly, Chester suffered from a number of medical ailments including heart worms and cancer. Despite removing the cancer tumors, Chester’s prognosis was grim. The organization didn’t know how long the pup would live, but wanted to find him a loving home to spend his final days. This is where Nicole Elliot comes into the picture. When scrolling through the Animal Ark Rescue posts, Nicole saw a before-and-after photo of Chester. She saw that he was in need of hospice care and decided to take on the task of making the pooch’s final days the best possible. Nicole says she knew it was the right thing to do.
“I was scrolling through, and saw a post with a before and after picture, and ‘hospice needed’ as the title. I had to think hard about if I could handle this since I have a young daughter, and my Grandma just passed away. I slept on it, and woke up knowing it was the right thing to do. I knew that it would be my responsibility to make his final days the best I could, to mine and his ability.”
After picking up Chester from the rescue, a “bucket list” was created for the ailing dog that included items such as riding in the car with the windows down and going on a doggie shopping spree. Nicole told WTVM that Chester enjoyed the food and treats the most.
“So far he took a ride with the windows down, he had a famous Nathans hot dog, he had a doggie sundae, he had a milk and oatmeal bath (spa day), he went on a shopping spree where he got a cozy bed, bandannas, lots of treats, and toys. Out of all of that his favorite part has been any of the food and treats – he still has a HUGE appetite!”
Sadly, according to Nicole’s recent Facebook post on Chester’s Final Journey, Chester has passed away. Nicole notes that though she is heartbroken over Chester’s death, she wouldn’t have had her time with Chester any other way.
“I am so sad to tell everyone that my sweet baby Chester has left this world. I am heartbroken, but at the same time I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. I held him until his last breath and then some. I told him it was ok to let go, and how loved he was. I know without a doubt Chester died knowing that he mattered. He knew love.”
To honor Chester and his passing, Nicole has setup a YouCaring page to help support the Animal Ark Rescue and their efforts to provide outstanding homes and hospice care to neglected animals.
[Image Credit: Facebook]