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Bela the German Shepherd Will Be Buried With His Owner After All

Bela, who made headlines after his owner died and her will had an option that he be euthanized and buried with her, has passed away.

Michael Leaverton  |  Jan 27th 2015


You remember Bela. He’s the dog whose owner, Connie Ley, died last November and left two options in her will: The German Shepherd could be sent to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Utah or euthanized and his ashes added to her own, the decision dependent upon finances and the direction of a designated friend. After public outcry that the second option would even be considered, Bela ended up going to the tranquil rescue.

Now, however, it turns out that Ley’s wish will indeed come true. Bela was sent over the Bridge last weekend, due to an aggressive cancer diagnosis.

Best Friends released a press release after the death:

On Sunday morning, Bela’s abdomen was distended and he was breathing fast. Because of this, he was brought to our clinic to get checked by our veterinarians. Tests were conducted that revealed fluid in his abdomen and around his heart and nodules in his lungs. Based on these facts, our medical director diagnosed Bela with a very fast progressing cancer. There was very little likelihood he would have lasted more than a day or so. Because of this diagnosis, we felt euthanasia was the right option. While this was a very difficult choice, we approached the decision from the perspective of what was in Bela’s best interest.

It’s a sad end to Bela’s story, but we feel heartened to know that he’ll finally be back with his owner, whose will caused so much grief and confusion.

“We felt the right thing to do was to fulfill Bela’s owner’s last wishes,” continued Best Friends. “Therefore, we are cremating Bela and sending his ashes to Indiana so he can be buried with his owner who passed away in November.”

Read more at Best Friends’ Facebook page.

Read more of our coverage of Bela: