Call it love or doggy devotion. A 15-year-old German Shepherd died from kidney failure after staying by his owner's graveside for over a decade.
The dog was purchased by Miguel Guzman, an Argentinean man, as a present for his young son, Damian. Upon arriving in the home, he was named Capitan. Just a year later, Miguel was dead and the heartbroken family buried him in a cemetery on the other side of town. When they returned from the funeral, Capitan was gone.
According to the director of the cemetery, the young dog showed up one day on his own. "He started wandering around the cemetery until he eventually found the tomb of his master."
During the day, Capitan sometimes walked around the cemetery but he never failed to return to Miguel's grave at the end of the day. Although Miguel's son tried several times to bring him home, Capitan always made his way back to the cemetery when the sun went down.
During his lengthy vigil, Capitan became something of a global celebrity, which enabled him to receive food and care in the cemetery. Unfortunately, he was diagnosed with terminal kidney failure four years ago.
To ensure he lived out the rest of his days in peace, veterinarians decided to treat him in the cemetery instead of making him stay at the vet surgery. After battling the illness for a few years, the faithful dog finally passed away.
Authorities are calling for Capitan to be cremated with his ashed placed underneath a monument so locals can pay tribute. But this faithful friend is not the only pet who has kept vigil for his owner who has passed away.
Hachiko was an Akita dog living in Japan in the 1920s. Every day, the dog waited to meet his owner, who was a university professor, at a train station. Tragedy struck in 1925 when the professor died one day while at work.
The poor dog waited for him that day, not knowing what had happened. He continued to return to the train station every day until his death in 1935. After his death, he was honored for his loyalty and devotion and his memory is celebrated in Japan to this day.
Likewise, Greyfriars Bobby, a Skye Terrier, was honored for his devotion to his owner in England. The dog reportedly spent 14 years keeping vigil at his owner's grave until his death in 1872. After his death, a statue was set up to remember him and several books were written about the story.
But recent research suggests that unlike Capitan and Hachiko, Greyfriars Bobby did not actually exist but was rather played by two identical dogs, trained by owners to encourage tourist visits.