A park lined with tall grasses winds around a small creek in Colorado. It's a warm summer afternoon. This, is Marsha's favorite place.
Though she may not realize why, each day she's here, is a gift.
"We've taken her camping, fishing, she loves to play in tall grass," Judy Jaros, Marsha's best friend, said. "We just decided we're gonna hike and camp, we go fly fishing... The only trick with that, is every time my husband casts the fly, she thinks my husband is throwing a ball so she goes trying to run in the river!" Jaros laughed.
Marsha is a 5-year-old American Bulldog Mix.
"I just fell in love with her. My husband too," Jaros said, "We're just giving her one fun day after another."
Chasing mice in a field, Marsha is blissfully content .
Judy Jaros, a volunteer dog walker at the Humane Society of the South Platte Valley, was a self-proclaimed cat person, but had a change of heart when she met Marsha.
"She has personality plus," Jaros said.
Marsha was at the shelter for six months, recovering from a former life that had left her battered and nearly broken. She often ran wild, and had birthed countless litters of puppies.
"She had so many problems when she came in. She had an infection, she had a broken toe, she had a bullet in her elbow," Jaros said.
None of it mattered to Marsha. And soon, it didn't matter to Jaros, either.
"So we adopted her. Plus she had stolen our hearts so thoroughly," she said.
But then, the day they were set to bring her home forever, the Jaros' found out Marsha had a type of skin cancer, and it was already at stage three.
"So what could we do? We had to adopt her then!" Jaros said. "Her prognosis isn't good, but we just decided she doesn't have an expiration date."
Instead of giving up, the couple has given Marsha a sort of 'canine bucket list,' making each day a gift filled with her favorite adventures.
"She doesn't act sick, so we don't think, 'Oh poor Marsha, she's a victim of cancer.' We just think, 'It's another day with Marsha, let's do something fun.' And it's been such a blessing," Jaros said.
When the time comes to finally say goodbye, Marsha will have left the Jaros' rich – maybe not in their pockets – but surely in their hearts.
"She had a really hard life. She deserves a chance. And yeah, it might break the bank, but it's money. Whatever. She's brought us more joy, she's just priceless to us, so it was worth it," Jaros said.