Lil Bub, the goofy-faced kitty who took the internet by storm, died Sunday. She was 8.
On Monday, Mike Bridavsky announced the death of his beloved pet on social media.
“On the morning of Sunday, December 1st 2019 we lost the purest, kindest and most magical living force on our planet,” he wrote.
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This is my first photo with BUB next our last photo together. On the morning of Sunday, December 1st 2019 we lost the purest, kindest and most magical living force on our planet. BUB was cheerful and full of love laying in our bed with us Saturday night, but unexpectedly passed away peacefully in her sleep.. I have always been fully transparent about BUB's health, and it was no secret that she was battling a persistent and aggressive bone infection. Even knowing this, we weren't expecting her to pass so soon or so abruptly without warning. I truly believe that she willingly made the decision to leave her failing body so that our family would not have to make that difficult decision ourselves. It is impossible to put into words the profound effect that BUB has had on my life, on the lives of thousands of homeless pets, and on the lives of those of you that have cared for her as if she were your own family. She taught me everything that I know about unconditional love, she brought my wife Stacy and I together, she's the reason we have our beautiful children Rosco and Lula, and she has been a constant source of warmth and love in our lives for the past 8 years. To say that our family is devastated would be an understatement. But most importantly, BUB has made a huge difference in the world of animal welfare, and in the lives of millions of people worldwide. She has literally saved thousands of lives (both pets and humans), she started the first national fund for special needs pets, she was the subject of groundbreaking genetic and biological research, she's helped raise over $700,000 for animals in need, and has spread a message of determination, positivity, and perseverance to people all over the world. And even though my heart is absolutely crushed by her graceful departure from planet Earth, I know that her sprit, magic, and overwhelming energy are still with us, reminding us every day to be better. Dearest BUB, I will never forget your generosity, your limitless supply of love, or your uncanny ability to bring so much magic and joy to the world. I am forever honored and humbled that you chose me as your caretaker. Please visit all of us in our dreams o
Lil Bub began her rise to viral fame in 2011, when Bridavsky first posted her photo on Tumblr.
She quickly became one of the decade’s most famous cats, accruing more than 2 million Instagram followers.
Lil Bub’s unique appearance — bulging eyes, tiny arms and legs, and a tongue forever sticking out — were the result of several genetic deformities “which all add up to one of nature’s happiest accidents,” according to her website.
In 2015, scientists crowdfunded a campaign to sequence Lil Bub’s genome, through which they made discoveries that explained the cat’s genetic mutations.
Lil Bub had medical issues throughout her life, starting with her birth as runt of the litter. At just 1 year old, she was diagnosed with osteopetrosis, and became the first cat diagnosed with the bone disease.
Despite her health issues, the cat’s death was unexpected, Bridavsky said. Just the day before, she had been “cheerful and full of love laying in our bed with us but unexpectedly passed away peacefully in her sleep,”
“I have always been fully transparent about BUB’s health, and it was no secret that she was battling a persistent and aggressive bone infection,” Bridavsky said. “Even knowing this, we weren’t expecting her to pass so soon or so abruptly without warning.”
Lil Bub had been the subject of several fundraising campaigns for special needs pets, which raised over $700,000 in her lifetime, Bridavsky said.
“Dearest BUB, I will never forget your generosity, your limitless supply of love, or your uncanny ability to bring so much magic and joy to the world,” Bridavsky said. “I am forever honored and humbled that you chose me as your caretaker.”
Tributes poured in for Lil Bub, with many people thanking her for bringing them joy over the years.
The account for Grumpy Cat — a similarly famous internet cat who died earlier this year — posted a photo of the two cats together.
“Friends forever,” it was captioned.
- Scientists Are Trying To Find Out Why Lil Bub Looks So UniqueNatasha Umer · May 26, 2015
- Grumpy Cat Is Dead. Long Live Grumpy Cat.Hazel Shearing · May 17, 2019
Julia Reinstein is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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