This Marine Takes His Beloved Terminally Ill Dog On An Epic Cross Country Road Trip

OK it's time to act like you've been chopping onions again (probably best to have a box of Kleenex handy as well) because this is both a heartbreaking and heartwarming story. It's about a man and his dog, or more specifically a marine named Robert Kugler and his terminally ill labrador named Bella.

Kugler and Bella had often gone on long road trips but then one day Bella was diagnosed with osteo-sarcoma (bone cancer) and so Bella had to lose her front leg. Tragically, the doctor said the amputation wouldn't save her though because the cancer was in her lungs, and they gave her around three to six months to live.

This was 14 months ago back in May 2015 and Bella is still here. In fact she's just undertaken her second long distance road trip across the US, this one heading towards the East Coast.

Recounting the first trip Kugler says, "We traveled for 5 months, and covered thousands of miles, and spent countless nights sleeping in the 4Runner, with many havens on couches and guest beds of the friends I've been fortunate enough to make across the country in my short lifetime. It was an incredible and unforgettable experience."

Once they got back Kulger said he felt like there was more adventuring to be done, so they embarked on a second trip when the opportunity arose. Yet, even when they get back from this trip their adventuring isn't going to end.

"The plan is to get back to Nebraska...pack up my things from my house, and head West/Northwest to tour more of the country." writes Kulger. "The mountains and more arid weather seem to do both of us well. We're trying to stay as fluid as possible, so not trying to set many plans in stone, but we are truly looking forward to continuing this amazing journey for as long as we can keep going."

Like I said, chopping onions. It's a beautiful story, we hope the pair continue to have their trips for some time yet. You can follow their adventures on Instagram and check out some pics below.

Tell me....is there any better way to start the morning...than enjoying the birth of a new day with someone you love next to you? #sunrise #ocean #bella #journey #labrador #menanddogs #survivor #cancersucks #florida #naples #summer #love #connection #lovethisdog #pier #dock #mansbestfriend #canonrebel
Bella and her new friend Khaleesi Dognerys Storm-Bone are fixated on the Pelicans that soar across the bayou. #bella #tripawd #newfriends #khaleesi #bestnameever #morning #adventure
Not much can put a smile on her face like that #fresh #mountain #air #beautiful #bella #labrador #love #happydog #dogsofinstagram #tripawd
And like that....she was swimming like the old days. #dogs #lifejacket #toppaw #beach #ocean #labrador #labsofinstagram #lovethisdog #bella #tripawd #beachlife
We made it to Florida. #neptunebeach #florida #atlantic #ocean #tripawd #labrador #labsofinstagram
Oh no!!! The shark got us. ? #shark #greatwhite #sharkbait #Bella #labrador #tripawd #explore #funtimes #tybeeisland #beachlife
When you give your buddy a ride across the country and see him get to witness his pup's first splashes in the ocean, it's hard to think you should be anywhere else. #inthemoment #pitbull #menanddogs #eastcoast #sunset #ocean #topsail #buddies
I was told that we needed to stop hereā€¦and now I see why. What a fun little tourist trap. #south #southcarolina #mexican #southoftheborder #roadtrip #landmark #tourist
How bout them #blueridgemountains #bella #tripawd #northcarolina #asheville #labsofinstagram @adventures_with_dogs #labrador #mountains
Gettin some country on. #Tennessee #nashville #guitar #labrador #tripawd #bella
We made it #nashville #parthenon #tripawd #Tennessee #labrador #labsofinstagram
"USS North Carolina (BB-55) was the lead ship of North Carolina-class battleships and the fourth warship in the U.S. Navy to be named in honor of the State of North Carolina. She was the first newly constructed American battleship to enter service during World War II, and took part in every major naval offensive in the Pacific Theater of Operations; her 15 battle stars made her the most highly decorated American battleship of World War II." -Wikipedia #Bella #warhistory #wwii #battleship #northcarolina #navy #labrador #tripawd #explore #roadtrip #walkabout
Unstoppable. #Bella #labrador #tripawd #dogs #pets #lovethisdog #iconic #rocky #philadelphia #philly #sylvesterstallone #laboftheday #love #dogsofinstagram #journey #epic
Yes, I have countess pics of Bella with her head out the window....but each time we hit the road, if only across town, is the best time of her life. What a lesson we can learn. #lifelessons #dogsofinstagram #bella #labrador #livesimply #lovethisdog #befree #iphonesia #labsofinstagram #tripawd
How truly blessed we were to have today be so beautiful as we traveled across Nebraska. #sky #clouds #tripawd #labrador @dogsofinstagram #adventure @laboftheday #midwest #iphoneography #Nebraska #explorenebraska
When you borrow your buddy's Dobie for some puppy Lovin. #dobie #mansbestfriend #doberman #dogs #smile #happiness #dogsofinstagram #friends
I'm pretty sure that everyone already knows Bella's name wherever she goes. #cheers #Boston #Tvland #cinema #silverscreen #tripawd #traveller #explore #tourist #dogsofinstagram
#Pawfect #picture #labrador #tripawd #lovethisdog #mansbestfriend #bella #water #dogsofinstagram #dogs