A little dog has been given the ride of her life after her owner wanted to show her the sights of America before she died from cancer.
Mayor of Attleboro, Paul Heroux, was devastated after learning his best friend and companion, Mura, a 10-year-old Japanese wolf dog, had just months to live.
He was supposed to head on vacation to the Middle East but instead cancelled the trip and deciding to take his terminally ill dog on trip of a lifetime in an effort to make the most of the time they had left.
Massachusetts mayor Paul Heroux went on a cross-country road trip with his dog, Mura
10-year-old dog, Mura, had an aggressive blood cancer and so her owner cancelled his vacation overseas for a road trip here at home
The pair drove from Massachusetts across to California and up to Canada
The pair had the chance to visit Mount Rushmore in western South Dakota
‘Rather than going to the Middle East for a vacation and spend time away from her, I decided to take a road trip to meet her breeder in British Columbia Canada,’ he said.
‘With chemotherapy, I have about a 50 percent chance of six months, I have a 10 percent chance of one year left with Mura,’ Heroux told NBC 10 News.
‘Mura doesn’t know she has terminal cancer so don’t tell her. Just let her think she is the little princess that she is going for the best ride of her life. Dogs love to go for a ride,’ he wrote on Facebook.
The pair began their cross-country road trip just a couple of weeks ago on October 28 taking in the sights and smells of 24 states, historic landmarks – taking plenty of photos, videos and doggie selfies along the way.
The pair too pictures of the trip wherever they ended up and posted them to Facebook
Mura and Paul ended up visiting 24 states as they traveled from East to West and back again
How many dogs can say they’ve traveled all the way from Massachusetts to Montana by car?
The pair made stops at Niagara Falls, Mount Rushmore and Yellowstone National Park before reaching British Columbia. From there, Heroux drove south to visit his alma mater, the University of South California, before heading to the Grand Canyon.
Heroux and Mura went down to San Francisco and took a picture of the Golden Gate Bridge in the background.
Mura also walked around Hollywood and along the walk of fame.
The duo also stopped at the Oklahoma City Memorial and the St. Louis arch before making their way home back to Massachusetts.
‘Several people that have gone through the same situation, losing their dog to cancer, said, ‘Just make sure that you give her the best few months of her life left”, Heroux said. ‘And I took that to heart.
Paul and Mura seemed to savor every moment together including some time in Hollywood, CA
Sura got to walk along the Hollywood Walk Of Fame and look for Lassie’s star
Mura got to see some of the country’s most iconic sights including the Grand Canyon
The pair even ventured into Canada and got to see the magnificent Niagara Falls at night
They even stopped off at some more less obscure sights like the St. Louis Arch
Heroux has been consistently sharing stories from their adventure on Facebook and has received thousands of comments in support of the trip.
‘I had no idea this would turn into a thing. I just went for a ride with my dog and did some sightseeing on my way,’ he told Fox News.
There have been some amusing posts during the trip. On one, Heroux wrote: ‘Filling up my gas tank: $40. Staying in a sketchy hotel: $60. The look on Mura’s face after she just ate a nasty freeway gas station hot dog: Priceless.’
Mura has been by Heroux’s side for ten years. The pair campaigned together when Mura was seeking re-election and she is a familiar sight at Attleboro’s animal-friendly City Hall.
Soon it was time to head back home, left, as the duo enter New York State
‘We knocked on doors together, went to schools together,’ Heroux said.
Paul says he can tell that Mura really enjoyed the trip and he hopes to write a children’s book about her adventures
Heroux is also a big animal advocate. Working with the police department, he began a ‘zero tolerance’ policy for people who leave their pets in hot cars.
Mura had been in and out of surgery, but has been in good spirits during the trip.
‘I feel that she bonded with me in a way that we haven’t ever been able to before,’ he said. ‘She definitely enjoyed the trip. I know my dog really well and this was a very nice time for her,’ he added.
Heroux says he made a whole host of new memories with his faithful friend over the last 12 days as they traveled 8,500 miles together, and says he is grateful for the unconditional love he has received for a decade.
Heroux says he plans to write a children’s book about the pair’s adventure.
‘She is family,’ he said. ‘She is the most precious thing in the world to me and she always has been.’