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/ Source: TODAY
By Erica Chayes Wida

Like many dogs, Stitch, a black Labrador retriever, absolutely loved beefy burgers.

So when Stitch's owner Maci Hanson and her family discovered that their beloved dog's days were numbered, they knew they wanted to honor him with something special. Since his favorite food was a Whataburger Jr. (eaten plain, of course), Hanson came up with an idea to throw her dog an end-of-life party with his favorite meal from the Texas-based chain.

On May 21, Hanson tweeted to Whataburger in hopes of recruiting someone from the brand's team who could help.

"Hey @Whataburger! This is Stitch and he is your #1 four-legged customer," Hanson wrote with a photo of her pet. "His favorite is a Whataburger Jr. plain and dry with cheese and sometimes fries if he’s been an extra good boy! Today we found out Stitch has lymphoma and his time with us is limited. We want to throw him a Whataburger themed celebration of life party. Can you help us celebrate this sweet boy and his love of cheeseburgers?"

By the following day, the Texas-based burger chain replied back: "Please send us a DM!!!"

According to Vicki Burlew, Hanson's mother who also tweeted out updates about the family's beloved pet, the Whatburger team got in touch with the family so they could send a care package to their home. When it arrived, the box was filled with plenty of orange supplies (and food) for a good, old fashioned burger blowout.

On May 25, the family threw Stitch a patty-filled party — surrounding him with beef, Whataburger balloons, cute party hats and lots and lots of snuggles.

As the heartwarming story went viral, Whataburger also posted about its "most pure and deserving Whatafan." Many tweeters chimed in saying that their furry friends had savored their last moments with a Whataburger, too.

A lot of pups just took a big bite out of life.

Of course, Stitch's story also made a ton of humans cry.

After an outpouring of support from across the country, Hanson announced that Stitch passed away on May 26, a day after his special party.

"Sunday morning Stitch crossed the rainbow bridge where he’s now bouncing around on cheeseburger clouds! He was surrounded by so much love & we were fortunate to have Stitch’s Whataburger party making his last day so special," Hanson tweeted.

What a sweet way to honor a furry friend.