BOWLING GREEN, Ky. -- It is truly a story about a man's best friend, and one that may end all too soon.
The Bowling Green Police Department plans to retire their K-9, Danny, after he was given only a few short weeks to live.
"There are very few days that I have gone to work that he hasn't gone with me," K-9 handler, Erik Woodward said.
Officer Woodward and his partner, Danny, have been working together for more than 8 years. But, the officer realized that would soon change after recently returning home from vacation.
"I dropped him off on the 18th and he was fine. There were no issues that I was aware of when he was boarded for the week. Then, I picked him up the next Saturday. When we returned, he didn't feel good but he didn't act like he felt bad. Later that night, he felt a little worse," Officer Woodward said.
He then decided to take Danny to a local vet.
"They did some blood work and thought it'd be best if we took him to Louisville for some further testing."
The X-rays showed what the vet had suspected.
"Cancer had spread a lot further than what we had thought at this point."
That was when they realized not much could be done.
"I'm devastated. He's my buddy and part of my family. He's been in my house, and played with my kids," Officer Woodward said.
Deputy Curtis Hargett is a friend of Officer Woodward and has even worked with Danny on assignments. He says the bond the two share is unlike any other.
"He didn't let his handler, Eric, know that anything was wrong with him until pretty much the end. His whole life was there to make Eric happy," Deputy Hargett said.
And now, Officer Woodward says he is committed to doing the same for his companion.
"He'll just stay with me and I'll make him comfortable. He'll get to eat whatever he wants and do whatever he wants until either he passes or I have to put him down to keep him from suffering," Officer Woodward said.
In 2011, Officer Woodward and Danny were awarded first place at the K-9 trials in "outside narcotics" and "vehicle searches."
Danny will officially retire tomorrow morning.