Lil Bub, a kitty who took the Internet by storm and grew to be one of the most famous cats, has passed away at the age of 8.

Lil Bub was known for her unique appearance – her big eyes, little arms and legs, and most importantly her tongue that permanently stuck out of her mouth. These features were the result of genetic deformities, but none of them slowed Lil Bub down. She was just like any other cat.

Lil Bub rose to Internet fame with more than two million Instagram followers, after her owner, Mike Bridavsky, posted a picture of her to Tumblr back in November 2011.

She was then featured on big websites such as Reddit, and from there, people all over the world were sharing her photos.

But Lil Bub never let the fame get to her head; Bridavsky used her celebrity status to make a different in the world of animal welfare. Together, they started the first national fund for special needs pets.

Lil Bub was also the subject of groundbreaking genetic and biological research, and she’s helped raised more than $700,000 for animals in need.

As she lived her life, she spread a message of determination, positivity and perseverance all over the world.

Bridavsky took to Instagram to share a heartwarming tribute to his beloved Bub.

“On the morning of Sunday, December 1st 2019 we lost the purest, kindest and most magical living force on our planet,” he began.

Lil Bub had been battling an aggressive bone infection for the past two years, but she unexpectedly passed away peacefully in her sleep.

“It is impossible to put into words the profound effect that BUB has had on my life, on the lives of thousands of homeless pets, and on the lives of those of you that have cared for her as if she were your own family,” Bridavsky continued.

He went on to say how Lil Bub not only has she taught him everything he knows about unconditional love, but she also brought his wife Stacy and him together, which is the reason they have their beautiful children.

“Dearest BUB, I will never forget your generosity, your limitless supply of love, or your uncanny ability to bring so much magic and joy to the world,” Bridavsky wrote to end his tribute.

“I am forever honored and humbled that you chose me as your caretaker. Please visit all of us in our dreams.”