Rescue Pit Bull Dying of Cancer Lives Life to the Fullest With New Owners
When Kelly Michael and Sarah Lauch first set eyes on Roosevelt the pit bull-Shar Pei mix, they knew the pup had to be part of their families.
The friends, who both help rescue centers evaluate dogs to see which ones are adoptable, met him while visiting Chicago Animal Care and Control.
"He was sitting so calmly with his weepy eyes looking up at me," Lauch told INSIDE EDITION. "My heart melted and we took him out of the cage and outside in the yard and we fell in love."
The five-year-old dog had been surrendered to the shelter by his previous owners because he was having problems urinating, but once the friends took him in, they realized just how sick he was.
"He was neutered and it did not help his urination issues," Lauch said. "When he went to get his teeth extracted, they put him under and noticed a lump in his groin. It was bone cancer.
"He isn't in any pain right now, but the vet will let us know when it is time."
Until then, the friends are determined to give let Roo experience the things he's missed out on, and they are working their way through a bucket list of activities.
They hope to take him on a cruise and to the Indiana Dunes. And he'll be royally spoiled with a night at the Waldorf Astoria in Chicago - complete with room service - as well as a professional photoshoot.
And his favorite so far?
"Ice cream!" Lauch said. "At first, we were just going to Dairy Queen for a one-time thing, but it caught on and his fans love it and have sent him gift cards for ice cream."
She added: "He also loved Starved Rock, where we hiked the hills with 4 other dogs. He led the way the whole time and never slowed down. It was amazing to see."
As for the future, the friends, who each have three other dogs, are hopeful that he will continue to battle on.
"The bucket list is fluid and day-by-day,' Lauch continued. "We don't know if he will be here tomorrow, so we take everything as it comes."
For now, the pup is enjoying rides in the car and hanging out with his new friends, especially children.
"He means the world to us,' Lauch said. "He literally has fit perfectly into both our families and it is really hard to imagine life without him.
"He doesn't know he is dying, so we keep our chins up and keep smiling because dogs know when you are sad.
"We want everyone to #LiveLikeRoo, even when he is gone. You have to live for today. Tomorrow isn't promised to anyone."
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