updated 07/26/2014 AT 5:15 PM ET
•originally published 07/23/2014 AT 4:05 PM ET
When one New Yorker learned his dog was dying, he decided he didn’t want to wait until his pet’s last day on earth to give his friend of 16 years a special experience.
Their list of destinations was any tourist’s dream: Shake Shack, MoMA, the beach and more.
“I never wanted him to feel lonely in the apartment and he loves the outdoors so much,” Garcia explained to Buzzfeed. “He goes with me to restaurants, grocery shopping, and naps in the park.”
What makes Elmo so special is his personality,” Garcia told PEOPLE. “He’s sweet and cuddly as well as stubborn.”
Because Elmo can’t walk, Garcia wheels him around the city in a baby stroller. He loves it.
“Soon after learning of Elmo’s diagnosis, I felt it was important to share new experiences with him as well as share some of my favorite N.Y.C. hang out spots,” Garcia said. “This experience of sharing has helped me cope with his fate and created memories that will last a lifetime.”
James doesn’t know how long exactly Elmo has left, but wherever the dog goes, his loving owner will be by his side.