19/05/2017 2:54 AM IST

This Photographer Captured Her Dog's Last Days Without Even Realizing It

Photographer Jasmina Lozar Povše’s favorite subject has always been her dog, Lilly.

When Lilly got sick in October 2016, Povše continued to take pics of the pup, thinking she’d document Lilly’s recovery and return to good health. 

“I took photos because I was truly positive she would be fine,” the Slovenia-based photographer told HuffPost. “Instead of a recovery, though, I captured my hardest goodbye.” 

Jasmina Lozar Povše
Lilly on the chair while her brother Deuce rests on the rug.

In December 2016, after months and months of tests and vet visits, Lilly died from what the doctors discovered was liver cancer.

“My heart broke when I lost her,” Povše, who runs a music site, said. “Even though I couldn’t let her go I know now I had to.” 

Initially, the beautiful black and white images show Lilly at ease, hanging out with her canine bestie Deuce, Povše’s other dog.

Jasmina Lozar Povše
Lilly gets a kiss from Deuce. 

“Deuce loved Lilly so much, it’s incredible,” Povše said. 

Jasmina Lozar Povses
Lilly gazes up with sweet puppy dog eyes. 

Povše found Lilly in a shelter in Croatia and said the dog quickly became her best friend. 

Jasmina Lozar Povše
Lily hangs out with Povše in her bed.

“When I spotted her there, she was so little and scared,” the photographer said. “But then she became my partner in everything I did. Lilly and I liked long walks, hiking, playing with the rocks, anything.” 

Povše even credits walks with Lilly for relieving her of asthma and allergy symptoms.  

Jasmina Lozar Povše
Lilly looks up while Deuce rests by her side.

Gradually, the photo series begins to show Lilly slowing down because of her illness.  

Jasmina Lozar Povše
Lily resting on a chair.
Jasmina Lozar Povse
Deuce stands guard as Lilly rests. 

“When I look at these photos now, every single picture takes me to that exact moment and it tears me apart inside,” Povše said. “She didn’t give up once.”

Jasmina Lozar Povše

As painful as the photos are to look at, the series reminds Povše of the great dog she once had.

“She was my best friend. She was up for anything, she was playful, happy and loving,” the photographer said. “Lilly will be in my heart forever.” 

See more of the heart-tugging photos below.