Terminally Ill Virginia Dog With Bucket List Still Needs Home

A few items have been knocked off Smoke's bucket list: He rode in a firetruck and ate a cheeseburger

Can you help a terminally ill dog make the most of his final days?

Smoke, a 10-year-old hound mix, has cancer. But the Animal Welfare League of Arlington is hoping someone will adopt him and help check items off his bucket list. The list includes getting a full-body doggie massage and getting his own Instagram account.

Smoke recently stayed with a foster family, but it wasn't a good fit, shelter spokeswoman Chelsea Lindsey said Tuesday. So Smoke still needs a home.

"He's a big, loveable goofball of a hound," she said. 

The shelter said in a "pupdate" that a few items have been knocked off Smoke's bucket list: He rode in a firetruck and ate a cheeseburger. Later this week, he's set to ride in a police car. 

Last week, the shelter announced Smoke's cancer diagnoses on its Facebook page and noted the "ridiculously handsome hound" still needed a home. 


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"We don’t know how long Smoke has left with us - it could be six months, or it could be just a few weeks," reads the post. "What we do know is that Smoke deserves to live the rest of the time he has left in a home, with a family that loves him. We are hoping that someone will come and adopt this big, goofy boy and give him as much love as they can during his last weeks and months."

But Smoke isn't going to just sit around waiting for a home; he's going to be busy living the good life while he can. 

Here was his full bucket list: 

  • Find a forever family
  • Go on a hike
  • Eat ice cream
  • Go to the beach
  • Have a birthday party
  • Ride in a fire truck
  • Eat a cheeseburger
  • Have breakfast in bed
  • Meet a celebrity
  • Ride in a police car and bay with the sirens
  • Get a full-body doggie massage
  • Go camping
  • Meet Santa
  • Be on TV
  • Jump in a big pile of leaves
  • Get a professional photoshoot
  • Go on a road trip
  • Get his own Instagram account
  • Ride in a convertible
  • Get a huge box of toys to play with and share with his shelter friends!

The shelter is asking anyone who can help fulfill some of the activities on Smoke's bucket list to email mail@awla.org or call 703-931-9241.

The bucket list is also a way to get the word out in the hopes of finding him a home.

"We hope to start crossing items off his bucket list now, and that whoever adopts him will keep it going," the shelter said on Facebook.

People interested in adopting or fostering Smoke can visit the shelter on 2650 S. Arlington Mill Dr. anytime during business hours.

On August 18, NBC and Telemundo stations around the country will team up with hundreds of shelters for the Clear the Shelters animal adoption drive. Shelters will waive or discount fees as part of the one-day event. Go here for more information.

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