Patrick Swayze was a huge animal lover and kept a menagerie of pets with his wife Lisa – which included farm animals, horses and dogs – at his ranch in the San Gabriel Mountains. Animals were such a part of his life that Swayze once said, “I don’t keep track of time… The segments of my life are in movies or animal generations.”
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In 1995, while filming Three Wishes, Swayze had to grapple with the death of his beloved dog Cody. In an interview that year, he said, “Cody – my guardian, my conscience, my friend, my son, my bodyguard for years – this 115-pound Rhodesian Ridgeback, who truly was a supreme being, died last Friday. I had to postpone being on this movie because I would not leave the hospital. Lisa and I stayed with him around the clock, and when I saw them carrying his IV and everything outside, I… [chokes up]… Our animals are our children, so it was the most difficult thing I’ve ever done in my life. Everybody thought I was crazy trying to keep him alive and I was just setting myself up for hurt, but I had a communication with this dog that was beyond belief. Not like a household pet. This dog and I have taken on six guys together.”
Born in 1952 in Houston, Texas, Patrick Swayze began his career as a dancer before finding success on Broadway. After early films like The Outsiders, he enjoyed a breakout as the sexy star of Dirty Dancing. Swayze followed with the smash hit Ghost, along with memorable roles in Point Break and To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar. Diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2008, the actor passed away the following year at age 57.