After Being Diagnosed With Skin Cancer, This Dog Needs Help Completing His Bucket List

by Amber

Every adoption is special, but when a 13-year-old dog named Marley left Michiana Humane Society for the last time, there wasn’t a dry eye in the room. Shelter staff waved off the senior pit bull while holding handmade signs and playing kazoos. They celebrated Marley’s adoption knowing he was on his way to a great life. His new family might only have him for a few months, but he’ll spend those months feeling safe, loved, and working on his ultimate bucket list.

View this post on Instagram

Hemlo out there new furriends! I am Marley! I am a senior gentleman, somewhere over the age of 10 years old. I have had quite the life, and unfortunately it is coming to an end. I have a pretty rough cancer diagnosis, BUT let me tell you- I am ready for however many months I have left to be the very best months of my life. I met my new moms last weekend, and after some phone tag with my shelter friends, they are bringing me home tomorrow! I will be sad to say goodbye to everyone who has taken such great care of me in the last 6 weeks, but I can’t thank them enough for all they’ve done to find me the very best home. Tonight is my last sleepover at the shelter, and starting tomorrow I will get to hog my new mom’s queen size bed- I CAN’T WAIT. What to expect here? A whole lot of adventures! (as long as I’m feeling up to them) I’m going on a whole journey through every dog’s dream bucket list, so follow along as I travel, meet new friends, experience brand new things, and just smile about life. ???? #dog #dogs #dogsofinstagram #shelterdog #adopted #bucketlist #bucketlistdog #bucketlistmarley #marleysmiles #pitbull #hospicedog #pittie #pitbullsmile #tongueouttuesday #marleyroams #adoptdontshop #doglivesmatter

A post shared by Marley Paul Chapman (@marleysmiles_) on

Just a few days before Marley found his forever family, a vet delivered devastating news.

Marley was diagnosed with cutaneous lymphoma–a terminal type of skin cancer. Considering Marley’s age and the progression of the cancer, vets predict he has six months to live.

Marley’s diagnosis was a painful blow for everyone at the shelter. Staff and volunteers quickly fell in love with the sweet senior. They also knew that finding a home for a senior dog with cancer would be near impossible.

They posted on Facebook saying,

“We understand that adopting a dog who is near the end of his life is a big ask. However, after meeting and getting to know Marley, we believe that he will bring so much love to a very lucky home for whatever amount of time is left before he crosses the rainbow bridge.”

No one wanted Marley to spend his last months of life in a shelter. They wanted him to feel the love and comfort that comes with being part of a family.

Amazingly, Marley didn’t have long to wait.

View this post on Instagram

Heyoo! I just want to say a big thank you to all of my friends here from @michianahumanesociety! They have taken the very best care of me for the past several weeks, and without them, I may not have ever had the chance to spend the rest of my life with a family all to myself. To the staff, volunteers, doctors, techs, and everyone involved in my care during my staff at the shelter- thank you! From my always wagging tail, to my pittie smile, to my soulful eyes, you all have been the best stepping stone to help me get my second chance at life. My moms know how hard it can be to find a safe place for fragile friends like me, but they’re very excited to be able to be the ones to keep me comfortable. I think that they already love me as much as you all did! Stay tuned as my bucket list journey will begin soon! #dog #dogs #dogsofinstagram #adopt #adoption #shelter #shelterdog #rescue #rescuedog #hospice #hospicedog #bucketlist #bucketlistmarley #marley #marleysmiles #shelterstaff #adoptdontshop #doglivesmatter

A post shared by Marley Paul Chapman (@marleysmiles_) on

Jordan and Jen met Marley and fell in love. They learned all about his diagnosis and what it would be like to care for a dog with terminal cancer. As a shelter director, Jordan understands more than most how important animal rescue is. And Jen is a massage therapist who works in end of life care. They felt that, together, they were uniquely prepared to give Marley the best life possible.

With adoption papers in hand, Jordan, Jen, and Marley left the shelter ready for a brand new life.

No one can know for sure how long Marley will live. He’s taking steroid medications to keep him comfortable, and for now, he’s feeling good.

Jordan and Jen are managing his veterinary needs, but they don’t want Marley’s last months of life to be all about medications and vet visits. They want to show their newly adopted dog how much he’s loved. To accomplish that, they’ve made him a bucket list.

Marley’s bucket list is full of things every dog should experience.

The list includes a trip to the beach, watching the sunset, and eating an ice cream cone. There are also big ticket items like visiting Wrigley Field, meeting someone famous, and inspiring someone to adopt a senior dog.

So far, Marley is having a blast checking things off his list. He’s already gotten to ride in a fire truck, eat a cheeseburger, and enjoy the first of many Puppuccinos.

Marley’s story has captured hearts across the country. He’s gaining more social media followers every day, and people are reaching out to turn his bucket list items into reality.

Send Marley Your Love!

Jen and Jordan are determined to do as many fun activities as they can while Marley is still up for it. They also want to create a lasting memento to share with their three-year old son when he gets older. The dog moms want to show their son how much Marley was loved, and they’re asking everyone to send post cards.

If you’d like to show Marley your love and support, please send your postcards to:

Marley Paul Chapman
490 S Elm Ave.
St. Anne, IL 60964

You can also follow Marley on Instagram and Facebook to keep up with his bucket list adventures.

Do you have a soft spot for senior rescue dogs? Read this story next! 

Related Posts