Miley and Billy Ray Cyrus Mourn Death of Family Dog Mate

Miley Cyrus and her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, are mourning the loss of their beloved German Shepherd, Mate.

The Disney Channel alum took to Instagram late Tuesday night to reveal that her family had recently suffered the loss of their canine companion, Cyrus sharing a series of photos from the years she had with Mate.

“We miss you Mate,” Cyrus wrote on her Instagram Story, adding a series of heart emojis. “Never will you be forgotten. Thank you for the loyalty and friendship. You are my brother.”

“I’m so sorry @billyraycyrus @tishcyrus,” she added.

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(Photo: Instagram / @mileycyrus)

“Miss you Mate,” she wrote in a second photo showing her as just a teenager holding Mate, who was then just a puppy.

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(Photo: Instagram / @mileycyrus)

Cyrus’ father, Billy Ray Cyrus, also paid tribute to the family pooch on his own Instagram account. The “Achy Breaky Heart” country crooner shared a photo of his phone screen, which bore a picture of Mate.

“Took this of my screen 11:11 June 11. Feel like the Tin Man,” he captioned the shot. “’ Now I know I have a heart... because it's broken.’”

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(Photo: Instagram / @billyraycyrus)

The Cyrus family had welcomed Mate into the fold back in 2010, purchasing the pooch from a couple in Lexington, Kentucky. The then only weeks-old puppy made his way to Los Angeles in January of that year, and it was soon revealed that Cyrus, then just 16, had named the pooch Mate after her Australian boyfriend, now husband, Liam Hemsworth.

“I just bought a little German Shepherd and I named it 'Mate' because I always say 'mate' now to Liam,” the Hannah Montana alum revealed to Zimbio. “So that's my little German Shepherd dog's name.”

Cyrus was so smitten with Mate that she even gushed about him on her official blog.

“It’s so great that Mate is a puppy so I can take him everywhere,” she wrote. “But it won’t be long until he’s his full size!”

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Cyrus added that Mate, at just 9-week’s-old, could grow up to 125 pounds, which Cyrus jokes will make it “a bit more difficult to fit him in my Prius.”

Mate’s death comes just five years after the pop singer said goodbye to another one of her canine friends. In 2014, Cyrus lost her beloved Alaskan Klee Kai dog, Floyd, who she recently paid tribute to on social media.

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