Prince William and Kate Middleton's Beloved Royal Dog Lupo Has Died

Prince William and Kate Middleton are mourning their family dog's death, Lupo, who has been with the royal couple for almost a decade. On Sunday, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge took to their official Instagram to announce their beloved cocker spaniel had died last weekend. Admitting they were very sad about his passing, the parents of three stated Lupo was "the heart" of their family for the past nine years, and they "will miss him so much."

Many fans and admirers of the Royal Family took to the comments section to express their condolences over the immense loss, sharing how heartbroken they were to hear the news. "So sad. Especially [the] first family dog. They are our hearts on the outside," wrote one fan, as another chimed in, "Oh, I remember when Lupo was a pup! Those furry family members mean so much and I'm so sad to hear of your loss." Another fan echoed the sentiments, expressing how losing a "beloved family dog is so hard for all" involved. "Remember the beautiful life you gave him, and in term, he gave you," they wrote.

Middleton's brother, James, a dog lover, also shared a poignant tribute to Lupo on his own Instagram alongside a lengthy message of the pup who shares a connection to his own dogs. "It is with great sadness that Lupo, the beloved dog of my sister Catherine and her family, has passed away," the 33-year-old wrote, revealing Lupo was the son of Ella, brother to Zulu, Inka & Luna. "Nothing can ever prepare you for the loss of a dog. For those who have never had a dog, it might be hard to understand the loss. However, for those who have loved a dog, know the truth: a dog is not just a pet; it is a member of the family, a best friend, a loyal companion, a teacher and a therapist."

James added how the "loss of a dog is, in almost every way comparable to the loss of a Human loved one," further noting how "the news about Lupo brought a wave of emotions flooding back" from when he lost his first canine companion in 2017. "There isn't much of a rule book on how to grieve for a dog, but I've said a prayer, lit a candle and taken Ella (Mum) for a long walk to spend time remembering Lupo. Rest in peace, Lupo. Tilly & Mini will be waiting for you. You will always be remembered and your legacy will live on forever. Good Boy."

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The Duke and Duchess welcomed Lupo in 2012, just a year before their first son Prince George's birth. The pup holds a special place in the family's heart as he was the first the couple got when William was on duty in the Falkland Islands for a six-week deployment. With the black cocker spaniel giving comfort to Kate as William was away and helping her cope amid the period away from each other, friends close to the couple tout Lupo as a great help in Kate and William's "time apart," according to PEOPLE.

Dogs have been a beloved staple among the monarchy, with Queen Elizabeth having her own set of faithful canines over the years, with the last of her loyal corgis dying in 2018. The queen's small and stumpy corgi, Whisper, died in 2018. She has owned the Pembroke Welsh breed since she was 18 after having received the corgi, Susan, as a gift from her father, King George VI.