Over the years our ESSCLI-Rescue family has endured the
tears while our beloved Springers crossed over the Rainbow
Bridge to join Bob, Emily and the rest of the springer
family. Here on this page we celebrate the lives of those
who have left this planet and now run and play pain free in
Friar & Bosco
My Old Dog
My old dog is not gone;
I see him still
on warm spring nights,
stubby tail wagging, nose in the air,
barking a warning
to prowling night creatures.
My old dog is not gone;
I see him still
on hot summer days,
splashing in the creek after rocks,
digging happily for stones
at the water's edge.
My old dog is not gone;
I see him still
on crisp autumn days,
around the yard,
charging through the leaf pile
in search of his ball.
My old dog is not gone;
I see him still
on cold winter nights,
curled up beside my feet,
paws twitching, snoring loudly,
dreaming dreams only dogs can understand.
My old dog is not gone;
I see him still
in the seasons of my mind,
brown eyes shining with love;
I feel him always
deep in my heart...
my faithful companion,
my best friend.
I've passed from this life to my
next, not knowing what I will be in
new world, but having been a dog and
with a Master like the one I've had,
I couldn't ask for more. I
provided many trials and
tribulations for him,
but he was always there by my side
as I was by his. And when I
of his commands, how I loved to run
and glide over objects as if on a
current of air. All that came
harder and harder with time, but he
there by my side, even to the last
when we parted ways, a decision
hard to make but ever so
A Very Special Girl
ago Emily Shepherd had placed Abbey in a home in Maine. She lived there
until a month ago, when her owner got rid of her because she had no control
over her urine. While that owner had failed to get medical attention for
her, whatever was causing her problem had worsened and become severe.
The shelter suspected Cushing's,
and Nanci promptly contacted
her own vet where Abbey could stay while tests were done to make a
diagnosis. After several attempts they found out it was not Cushing's.
Regular diabetes had also been ruled out; so the only thing left was
diabetes insipides or a mental issue that caused her to drink constantly.
More tests indicated it was diabetes insipides, a disease that can be
successfully treated with meds - but they are expensive! Nanci pursued a
source for meds at discount, found them, thought she had Abby's cure in
hand, when misfortune struck Abbey again.
at the vet clinic, she was going into shock. Her gums were white, she
was lethargic, and she wouldn't eat. An x-ray revealed a tumor on her
spleen. Only surgery would help that condition, and she was a very sick
had to consult our founder Marge, and of course Marge held to our principle:
ARE NOT GIVING UP YET. . . . She is ours; we placed her. We are responsible
for her for the rest of her life. . . . We will do our best. Maybe the
higher power will decide we have done enough and we can't do anything more,
but we have to let that power make that decision."
scheduled for surgery on Monday. Meantime, like any patient, she has her
good times and not so good times, but mostly she's responding to the
meds, seems better, and her spirit is amazing. Nanci visits her every day and
takes her out for fresh air. She greets Nanci with bright eyes, a wagging
tail and sloppy Springer kisses, and clearly says she is tired of the hotel
accommodations and would like a couch!!! One day she even said that if Nanci
had let her she would have chased that squirrel all the way down to the
boatyard and gone for a swim! It's still amazing how loved she is at the
office. The kennel help girl is in LOVE and bathes her every day to keep her
pants clean. She actually has gotten them white and they sure weren't that
Abbey has finally gone to her new home! On
November 7th, Nanci met Abbey's new mom at the Yarmouth Vet Center.
Although Abbey had been freed from there a few days previous, "Doc Tom"
wanted to speak with her adoptive mother so that he could give her a
"briefing". Abbey had been through so much and come through all of it
with her fabulous personality and attitude, he just wanted to make sure that
everything kept on going in a positive direction.
You see for two months, Abbey had been living
at the vet's office. It had taken THAT long to diagnose her problems,
get her stable, and then move on to her spleen. Finally just before
Halloween, her spleen was removed and the tumor was tested. Luckily
there was absolutely NO cancer. The prayers of the country were
On November 3rd, she was finally released for
a "test run" at Nanci's house. Even though she had difficulty with her
overnight urination at the vet's previously, with regular walks and "out
time", she spent four nights in a row at Nanci's house with NO accidents.
She was on her way to a new and exciting life.
So today, she is with her new family.
We will all miss her, but that's what rescue is all about. We take
them in, we care for them and then we find them a place to spend the rest of
their lives with love and care.
We know that Abbey will be happy and she has
many wonderful years ahead of her.
Thank you ALL for your support. Your public and private
all been met with smiles. You really keep our spirits up,
and most important, all those good vibes reached Abbey too!
We invite you to enjoy these happy ending pictures!!!
Eastern Show, Rhode Island, June 2009
An Abbey kiss
Whoppa Gillespie of Bordeaux, CGC
Homeport Tobias x Lady Rackatash
August 24, 1994 � November 28, 2008
Today I said
goodbye to my heart dog. No dog has ever
like my Whoppa Man. Some dogs teach you
about training, some teach
you about handling, but Whoppa taught me the
meaning of unconditional
From the moment I met that ragamuffin in the
shelter in Rockland, Maine he stole my
heart. He was just supposed to be a foster
dog, but I could never have let him go.
Born in Maine and raised on a lobster boat
until he was two, Whoppa was a perfect match
in our household. He loved the boat. Having
been shuffled around for the next 7 years of
his life, he wasn't as perfect in our house
initially because he was terrified that
someone would abandon him again. (He ripped
down the kitchen door frame three times!)
When I decided that I had better take him to
work with me
everyday in order to save my house and my
marriage, I solved the majority of his
separation anxiety. Of course, those of you
who have seen him at shows know that he
NEVER got used to a crate or being away from
His name became my persona on the weblists
and many an introduction was created when
his name was spoken. I remember meeting the
owner of his sire at a show one day when I
called Whoppa's name. She knew that there
was only ONE Whoppa! And he went over to her
at 9 years old and put his head in her lap
as if to say, "I know you". And yet again
this spring, they met and he was stuck to
her like glue.
As much as it
hurt me to let him go, I knew that he would
have done the same for me. So I let my
Whoppa go. I know that Daisey, King, Allie,
Bucky the foster dog, Hogan the boarder,
Emily's Daisy and Barney and most
importantly his brother, Baxter, father,
Toby and mother, Lady are all there with him
now and he is renewed to the boy that I met
all those many years ago (but with a little
more knowledge and inner peace).
Throughout his almost 5 years with me, he
has traveled all over this country as a
representative for English Springer Spaniel
Club of Long Island - Rescue, he has made
many friends. Without Whoppa, little Kate
would never have fallen in love with
Springers and rescued DW, without Whoppa's
letters for the Eastern raffle I doubt it
would have been such a success. Today I
officially retired his purple tuxedo
emblazoned with ESSCLI-Rescue. It will never
be worn again, because no one could ever
pull it off quite like he did!
My only regret is that he left us before I
was able to complete the long awaited
registration process. After much hard work,
I was able to get 5 five dogs from assorted
situations renewed to their AKC status and
Whoppa was to be one of them. Maybe they
will give him his AKC number posthumously.
But no matter what, he was a dog among dogs,
he was the best and he represented our
beloved breed with a zest for life and
people that doesn't come along everyday.
Goodnight my beloved Whoppa, I will always
love you ~ my endless love.
" In February of 2004, I received a call from a woman in western Maine
who needed to surrender an older female springer and she didn't want to
keep her until we could find a home. Allie was jealous of the new
toddler in the home. She told me that Allie was 11 years old and that
she had been deaf for about a year. Well, King had just passed away and
the only dog left in my house was Daisey Mae (I think), so I drove up
and retrieved Allie to take her into foster care.
In Memory of
"Whitney's Brookside Allison"
McDerry's Illustration x Lady Ann's Little Meg)
January 1993 -
From a match,
to a rescue parade, to a specialty,
to cruising on Casco Bay...
girl turned heads wherever she went
She will always
be in our hearts.
Allie we miss
and all the
hearts at ESSCLI - Rescue
She was pretty terrified when she arrived and because she had
been completely shaved, she was freezing. We always keep our home cool
in the winter and this poor little thing was shivering! Luckily for me
I was working at LLBean at the time and I found one of those gorgeous
plaid wool coats in the employee store for pittance and it was even her
As the months progressed she grew some fur.
She learned to relax but we found that she was in renal failure. She
was on special food and no one new how long she might last. Summer came
and she found herself experiencing the ocean with the rest of the dogs. Whoppa had arrived by then and he wasn't about to let her sit on the
shore... she had to join him. Yes, Allie was still around and no one had
expressed an interest in her.
September came and suddenly there was
someone who wanted her. They had adopted from us in the past even
though they lived in Ontario, CAN. So plans were made. The night
before she was set to leave for Vermont on the first leg of her journey
to a new land, my husband failed... Fostering 101... He cried himself to
sleep. He couldn't let her go. She had become his soul mate. What
could I do. She loved him, too! So I called the family and thankfully
they understood. In October, I registered her with the AKC for the first
time as a birthday present for my husband. That was when she officially
became Whitney's Brookside Allison.
The next April Allie competed in her first
match show in Long Island as a veteran and won her class (she was the
only one!), then in June of 2005 she competed in a REAL show at the
Eastern ESSC Specialty as a veteran again. Again, she won. Again, she
was the only one in her class. But the eleven year old who had been
shaved down and looked like a puppy had become a beautiful old lady! In
September of 2005, Allie crossed over the Rainbow Bridge. Her time with
us was short, but it was OH so sweet.
In June of 2006, this ad appeared in the
catalog of the show where she had competed the year before. Allie was
the first dog I took into the show ring and as most of you know, she
wasn't my last, she was just the beginning. In November of 2006, I ran
into the judge from the Eastern show and he said "I remember you, you
had that pretty little Veteran that was a rescue!"
AXP OAJ AJP RN EAC-V EJC-V EGC-V TN-O AD PDII CL3-R,F,S
CGC (Rescue ESS)
Circa 1995- May
Charles was surrendered to the Rescue Program of the ESS
Club of Long Island in poor
bits of details make for a long story, but the jist is
that he was a 3-4 year old dog that had been physically
and socially isolated. He was in two foster homes and a
kennel before landing with me. He had a flat affect and
was hard to know at that time.
Over the next
several months, as he learned to value me and our home,
his personality came out and there were many
fears to overcome. I share this to give you an idea of
just how far we came.
was the most affectionate and loving dog I have ever
known. He watched me all
the time with those
expressive spaniel eyes, and enjoyed always being in the
same room with me. He never learned to enjoy
playing with toys, but loved to work for me and earn
We started obedience training early on and soon tried
agility to build his confidence.
was the perfect activity for us. I believe that the pace
of agility allowed him to let go of the worry and stress
he felt so much of the time. On course, he felt that the
world made sense, he knew what to do- and running and
jumping felt good! And I had the opportunity to see his
success and be proud of him. Agility changed his life
and mine for the
was a perfect first agility partner. He did not mind
repetition and was willing to keep trying until I got
the handling figured out. Charles always gave me all he
had. We were not always successful, but he always did his best for me.
has something only he or she can teach us, but Charles
taught me volumes. He
taught me so much about dogs, and also about courage and
love. Charles had the biggest
heart and while I
miss his physical presence, I know his spirit will be
with me for the rest
of my days.
best bud Zack was adopted in June 1995. He was born in July,
1993. In those days Marge Silverthorn handled all calls. I
remember her telling me that she was rarely wrong when she
placed a dog. I want her to know she was not wrong with us.
Zack was two when we went to Gini's house in Garden City, NY. I
remember her sons were very sad to say goodbye to Zack. My sons
were 1 and 3 then. We took him home and have had a wonderful
life. He truly has been a distinct family member and we can't
imagine life without him.
My sons are 14 and 12 now and are the size of grown men. He is
a great example of how much a family can be changed by a dog
needing a home. Zack is a great family dog. In the early years,
he spent a lot of time running free with the neighborhood
kids. (We have no leash law and in our old neighborhood we were
surrounded by woods and trails).
His later years have been spent in our new house which is close
to the bay which he likes very much as well. Zack stays on a
leash 98% of the time now since his judgment isn't quite what it
once was. Most people who see him can't believe he is as old as
he is. I would say he looks nine.
He is a good sport and year after year has posed in Santa
outfits, Halloween costumes, hats and sunglasses etc. He
has put up with a lot of indignity living with 2 boys. We never
got another dog but 2 years ago we got a cat. We thought it
would be WWIII but Zack turned out to be a great Grandpa to the
kitten. They go on walks together now.
The summer Zack turned 11, we purchased a motor home. Like any
good retiree, Zack took to the open road. He adapted well to
the experience. Campgrounds are a place with a concentration of
dogs and kids. Just what he is used to. We visited 7 states on
the trip we took to Branson MO, summer-05. This past summer,
Zack visited Canada, Mass and Maine. (He had to show "his
papers" to the Canadian Border Patrol to leave the good old
USA). Unfortunately he didn't get to actually see Niagara
Falls but I showed him a post card....no dogs allowed on the
Maid of the Mist.
I don't know what else to tell you except he is family. We have
witnessed his transformation from teenager to grandpa. He is
slower now but still can run fast when he feels like it.
hearing is about gone but thank goodness he still has great eye
sight. Now that he is older, that springer "difficultness" is
all gone. He is completely cooperative at all times and really
seems happy in spite of his various lumps, bumps, aches and
pains. We love him very much.
Thank you again for the willingness to profile my good dog and
taking notice of this senior dog and tell Marge she made the
Meg, Tracy James, Drew, Zack, & Kitty Griffiths
Zack was 13 1/2 when he went to the Rainbow Bridge.
appeared on one of our newsletters a few years ago. This past
March, Lucky Buck crossed over the Rainbow Bridge to join his
pals on the other side. He is sorely missed by not only Jim and
I (his foster family) but most by his new family, Bonnie and Al.
My friends ask me how I can do it. And before March 2003, I
could tell them without hesitation that it was gratifying and
easy. Which it can be. Up to that point, I'd had Rosie O'Grady,
aka Eeyore, here for 3 days. Then I had Charm for about two
months. An 11 year old female who lavished all of her love on
me, but was jealous of my own spaniels. When she went to her
new owner's home where she was the only dog, I couldn't have
been happier. Then there was Zachary... He was stunning, easy to
get along with and loved everyone. He was only with me for two
weeks. Peanut and Minnie stayed for a few days before they were
transported to their new home.
along came Lucky Buck... the tough guy... the stray... the boy no one
wanted. He had been shaved down, didn't like to have his head or
face touched, didn't want to have a leash put on, got mad when
people tried to make of him and wasn't really house trained.
Bucky had been in at least two foster homes before me and was
getting nowhere fast. When I first picked him up, I thought,
what have I done. How in the world can I handle this
temperamental dog and all of my others? And who in the world
will ever want him.
time went on, he spent time with our family and our dogs and
relaxed a little. He still had his days though. People called
about him, but when they heard about his problems, they didn't
want him. Someone actually came to visit him and he growled at
him. We began to think that he was never going to get a home.
Then one day
almost a year later, a wonderful woman called me. She listened
to the story of Bucky and all the things that had happened in
his life and she said she still wanted to see his picture. A
picture of a 79 pound brute who had just been diagnosed with a
thyroid problem. But then she said she wanted to meet him!
I figured I
was wasting my time taking him to meet them almost 300 miles
away, but I had to try. I just knew that if he stayed with me,
I could never open my house to any other foster dogs... I was
running out of room. Well, surprise of surprises, he was a good
boy, he met his new Mom and Dad and he actually liked them and
they liked him. They didn't call him Lucky for nothing!
Bucky's new parents email me routinely with updates on his
progress and life and every time I shed tears of joy! I still
miss him, but I know that he is out there loving someone the way
he should be. My house is now occupied by a senior in need of a
home named Allie... my husband worships the ground she walks on
and she can't get enough of him. And when I read him this story,
the big guy shed a tear!
there are so many dogs out there in need of foster care, I would
tell anyone who has a little extra room and a little extra love
to give it a try. I believe that in the last two years, I have
gotten much more than I have given and will never forget any of
my special foster dogs (or their parents). And I give all of
our foster families my heartfelt thanks because I know what it
My name is Russell. My soon to be new Mom picked
me up at Dr. Milne's vet clinic in August of 2002. Mom was working
with ESSCLI Rescue and was supposed to take me to her house
to stay until I could be sent to a new home.
minute I met mom, Joy Sarnelli, I knew that I had to stay with
her. I started right off, showing her how much I liked her.
I jumped up and licked her face. Not like those people I didn't
like (I bit those guys). I saw Dr. Milne out of the corner of
my eye and knew that she was jealous 'cause I was kissing my
soon to be new Mom.'
put me in the crate in the car, I made sure that they thought
that I really loved being in the crate. I showed them just how
excited I was to be there.
got to their house - WOW! I just knew that I had to stay there.
They had a fenced-in yard for me to run in and I wanted to be
out there all the time. Whenever they tried to stop me from
going out the front door, I said "NO, don't grab my collar
to stop me, I am going!" It didn't seem like they liked
that, but I just couldn't help myself.
TOYS! Oh my goodness - there were so many toys. I have never
seen so many! I wanted them all and I was so afraid that Ricky
or Reggie would take them away that I make it clear that I wanted
to keep them. You know "that growling thing". Still
mom, Joy liked me!
Even though she had two other "fur children" she had
time for me. And they had time for me too. We played and played
and played until we couldn't play anymore.
the place so much, that I was determined not to leave. I laid
on Mom's feet when she sat at the kitchen table; I cuddled on
her lap when she was on the couch and I followed her everywhere.
Finally, about three glorious days had passed and I heard "Mom"
on the phone with Aunt Emily and Aunt Marge from rescue. She
told them she wanted to keep me! Yippee! Mom had failed as a
foster parent! Now she was my parent!
things got serious… I had to be an even better dog. I
had to learn not to "make water" in the house, I had
to go to school (They called it the "Breakfast Club",
but I knew it was really obedience school), and I had to get
my Canine Good Citizens Award. I did it all! I would have done
almost anything to have the life that I have today. Mom tells
me how proud she is of me, and gives me love and attention.
I can't remember anymore when life wasn't good!
by the way, since then, many foster dogs have come and gone,
but I have stayed and stayed and stayed!
Hunting for the right K-9 companion can be challenging.
Do you pick a puppy, middle aged or senior pet? Well after adopting
an 8 yr. old liver and white Springer named Brandy from a rescue
group and having such good luck with the adoption process the
answer was clear.
a black and white senior Springer in a shelter listed under
English Springer Spaniel Club of Long Island Rescue. Our hearts
immediately went out to this old gal. The next thing we knew
we were on our way to Nanci LaMarque's home to pick up the newest
arrival to our home, the companion we now call Eeyore.
this adoption process a wonderful experience for us. She informed
us of Eeyore's medical needs and made sure the home was a perfect
match for both Eeyore and us. We tried several names for our
new companion, but kept coming back to Eeyore. She's slow paced,
calm, gentle and very cute with those sad Springer eyes. Eeyore
immediately fit into our household and much to our surprise
we had very little trouble with sibling rivalry. She adjusted
very quickly into her new home, we were amazed to see how adaptable
even an older dog can be.
was picked up as a stray apparently having roamed the streets
on her own for 2 to 3 months. She had some health problems because
of this, but these got cleared up and this sweet old gal is
now healthy. She is deaf but does well with hand signals for
sit, down, come, and stay. She wears a little bell on her collar,
so we know where she is. She likes to know where we are in the
house, so as we move from room to room we make sure she sees
us. We often wonder how such a sweet senior ended up on the
streets alone to fend for herself. We think that both of our
senior gals are just glad for a second chance in a home where
they get lots of love and attention. We think it's just as easy
to adopt a senior companion as a puppy, because by the time
they are taken into the rescue league and living in foster homes
you already know the disposition of the dog, their likes, dislikes,
and basic health.
brag all day about how wonderful Eeyore and Brandy are but words
can't express how rich and joyful these two fun, faithful companions
have made our lives. We can not imagine what it would be like
to come home and not see their happy faces at the door.
again to the dedicated volunteers of the English Springer Spaniel
Club of Long Island--Rescue.
Daisy and Oliver" It's
not always just one dog that makes a home, sometimes more than
one makes it a wonderful place to be.
Barney was surrendered to Cheryl Petras in Vermont for nipping
at a child who was taunting him with food. When Emily and Adam
Shepard came upon ESSCLI--Rescue, they decided to call Cheryl
to talk because she was closest to them. Cheryl told Emily about
Barney and was up front about the fact that he had nipped. They
decided to go see him anyway. The three of them agreed to meet
in Keene, NH and the Shepards fell in love immediately. Not
only that, but Adam wanted to take another dog Cheryl had just
taken into foster care, but she said he had to stay there for
awhile! So into the car they went and headed back home to Maine.
On the way, they stopped at a store. When Emily came back from
making her purchases, she found Adam throwing a stick for Barney
in a patch of grass between the store and a restaurant without
holding onto his leash. Somehow, Adam just knew that Barney
wasn't going anywhere.
to a bigger house, Emily and Adam decided to get a pal for Barney
and hopefully a dog, who would hunt with Adam. Emily called
and talked to Marge a couple of times; they discussed it for
about 6 months. Finally a 4 year old field type Springer was
available from a foster home in New Hampshire. Lady Daisy had
been surrendered to a shelter in Rockland, Maine because the
woman felt the children were mean to her. Apparently the woman
must not have treated Daisy very well either because she originally
had trust issues with Emily. Daisy had initially been adopted
by a woman who had a cat. Daisy tried to jump through a window
to get to the cat, so back to the Humane Society she went again.
Soon thereafter she was bailed out by ESSCLI-Rescue and placed
in the foster home of Vickie Dunbar. She was in really bad shape
and needed a home. Emily and Adam went to meet Daisy. It was
love at first sight. She was emaciated; she had major dry skin,
eye infections and ear infections. She even had a stitch in
her eye and no one knows why. "We have to take her home",
said Adam. She was not all that great in the car and still isn't…too
many birds out there to see in the wild blue yonder.
bird hunting with her almost immediately and she took to it
like she had been doing it for years. She needed her own time
to come to Emily. When Emily used to try to get Daisy to come
up and sleep on the bed, she would turn around and go downstairs
and wait for Adam to come home. But today she is the first one
on the bed claiming her spot! She used to sleep with "one
eye open" …any little noise would awaken her. Now
her comfort level allows her to sleep through anything. She
trusts woman now…she can't get enough of Aunt Nanci. In
the two and a half years she has been home in Maine, Daisy has
made great progress. Just like Barney, she loves the boat, loves
the water and after a day of hunting with Adam, loves nothing
more than to curl up in the lazy-boy with him for a nap. Today
both Barney and Daisy are well-behaved, healthy and loving.
When they go out with Mom and Dad, everyone stares at the beautiful
English Springer Spaniels and comments on how wonderful they
are. They can't imagine a better life than Maine, the lake,
the birds and the country! (And Mom and Dad too!)
Oliver was brought to Emily and Adam by his owner who had sold
her house and moved to an apartment where she couldn't have
a dog. Before coming to Maine, Oliver was standing next to the
road when a kid with a truck went out of control and drove over
his paw. Because of this accident he had to have major surgery.
He now has only one toe on his right front paw. When he came
to Emily and Adam's house, he was in tough shape; his paw was
infected and it still had a stitch that had to be removed. He
had not been getting as much attention as he needed. Emily's
vet is an orthopedic specialist and worked very hard with Ollie.
His paw had to be bandaged for months. They went out and bought
infant socks to go over the bandage to help keep the bandage
clean. Emily had to quickly learn some first aid techniques
so that she could take care of him correctly.
a long hard winter in Maine and at the beginning of it; Oliver
could barely climb the stairs. Today he can do it with no problem.
When he first came to Emily and Adam's house, he didn't play
with toys, but now he can't get enough of them. His spirit is
soaring! He much prefers sleeping on the bed with Barney and
Daisy to his old crate. Even as you read this, he is growing
fur back on his paw. He is running around in the yard, checking
out the new garden. On May 10, 2003, Ollie walked almost 4 miles
for charity in Portland. He is very proud of his accomplishment
and the money that he raised. His summer will be full of swimming
exercises with his brother and sister on their boat the "Docked
Jim and Nanci LaMarque adopted Daisey Mae 9 years ago from the
Connecticut Humane Society, they never thought that there would
be more than one Springer Spaniel in their household. This little
tiny 32 pound black and white dog with so many flea bites that
she bled when she was bathed had won their hearts... She was
wild and crazy, fun loving and every bit a Springer. A few years
later, Jim and Nanci moved to Maine and Daisey Mae was in heaven
on her new 7 acre property. But as she grew up, a little arthritis
set in and she calmed down and slowed down.
One day, they decided that maybe she needed a pal… Someone
to play with and keep her a little more active. Nanci looked
up English Springer Spaniel on the internet and ended up at
ESSCLI--Rescue. After talking with Emily, it was decided that
they would look for a male Springer around 5 years old. Not
long after, the call came. Believe it or not there was a 5 year
old, overweight Springer Spaniel at the Animal Refuge League
in Westbrook, Maine who had been found running loose in Windham
with no tags. Nanci and Jim jumped in the car and ran off to
arrived at the shelter the liver and white Spaniel was in the
kennel barking continuously and because he was still in their
quarantine program they couldn't let him out into the yard to
visit. It appeared that he had the potential underneath all
that dirty fur and drool to be a handsome man. The shelter said
that when they let him out, he didn't bark as much and so Jim
agreed he would be a fine dog. They filled out the forms and
said that they would be back when the quarantine was up.
day came, Jim was away, so Nanci went to get him. She brought
Daisey Mae with her to make sure that there wasn't an immediate
problem. It appeared that they were going to get along, so into
the Explorer they went. Nanci was impressed with the new dog
because he was quiet in the car, something Daisey had never
provided a free vet checkup at Nanci's vet and so an appointment
was made. When he went in for his checkup, Dr. Tom said he was
a healthy dog and probably about 10 years old. Nanci's heart
sank. How could this be true? The vet at the refuge league said
he was about 5. She called Emily and they arranged for him to
see Emily's vet. Dr Porter confirmed it… great teeth,
healthy, nice 10 - 11 year old dog - NO CHARGE! Now what? He
didn't bark, but he was 10! The new companion was just as old
as Daisey Mae. When Jim got home two days later, Nanci broke
the news to him and his response was "Well, what are we
going to do? We can't take him back just because he's too old!"
And so of course, he stayed.
Up to this point the dog had only been called "Buddy"…
you know, "hey buddy". But now he needed a real name.
Nanci was in the process of reading a Stephen King novel and
Jim is a pilot. She wanted to simply name him King and Jim said
no… "Sky King". Even Daisey's ears perked up
when she heard it.
King and Daisey Mae are the best brother and sister going. When
Daisey was hurt last fall, King wasn't there to protect her,
but every morning since he has licked her wounded eye to make
sure that she is ok and knows that she is loved. They sleep
together, they play together, and best of all they get to go
out on the boat the "Flying Spaniel" together. Daisey
is the queen of the boat but she is showing King the ropes.
Jim adores his "chubby boy" and makes sure that he
is always wearing an American flag bandana wherever he goes.
Daisey doesn't run very well anymore, she still tries to keep
up and the 10 year old King can still run like the wind! And
with all that land to play on, there is nothing he loves more,
well maybe chasing frogs in his mom's landscape pond and knocking
over all the plants and pumps. In one short year, a sad and
bedraggled stray has become the King of North Yarmouth and his
queen, Daisey Mae waits by his side while his court, Nanci and
Jim attend his to his every need.
and Lady" Hi,
my name is Oliver Reformato! I am one of the luckiest Springers alive
thanks to my mommy and daddy. It began about 8 months ago when
my mommy and daddy came up to the really nice kennel that I
was staying at. At my Aunt Emily’s pushing, mommy and
daddy had decided that their Springer (now my sister!) named
Lady could use a companion and friend. She looked a bit different
than I did, she is black and white and I am liver and white.
Looks didn’t matter to me though, I thought she was great
and followed her around wherever she went. My mommy was the
first one to give me lots of pats and hugs, which I love, I
returned her affection with kisses and wags. Daddy kept saying
that I was a big boy (now one of my nicknames) and how gorgeous
my coat was. After about a half hour of playing with Lady and
getting hugs, pats and kisses from mommy and daddy they took
got to my new home I didn’t know where to start! I got
to go in the yard and play with my new sister, Lady, then go
inside and inspect the house, run upstairs, jump on the bed,
and come back downstairs and play some more. I loved it!!! They
had a new bed for me and a new collar and leash and MANY new
toys. I couldn’t imagine a better place to be than with
two parents who loved me and spoiled me, and a sister! Though
Lady and I took some time to get to know each other, we get
along very well now. She told me she has been with mommy and
daddy for 9 years now and they rescued her like they rescued
me. She definitely rules the roost though, but that is ok by
me, I am happy to follow her lead!
Daddy were so patient with me, see I am deaf and I take some
special training. Not being able to hear doesn’t stop
me from playing, giving kisses, and my favorite thing they call
“giving the paw” for my favorite belly rubs. When
I do that it assures me that I will get lots of pats and hugs.
I am not really happy with being brushed, but I am getting better
with it because it does feel good and it makes me look SO handsome.
Every month it seems that mommy goes out and gets me a new toy…
usually because I have destroyed my other ones, but that’s
what I am supposed to do!!! There have been so many great times
and I know that there will be so many more to come. I am just
so happy that I have a home and parents that love me. In fact,
it seems like I had been with my family forever. And that’s
exactly what we are…. A family!
really like to thank my Aunt Emily and Aunt Marge for all their
hard work in finding me my mommy and daddy. I know that they
love me and all the other Springers that my mommy tells me about
that are just as fantastic as I am.
"Handsome (of New York City)" Traveling
incognito, he spent 8 months locked in a cage with a second
dog. Sprung from this 'no-kill' shelter, his farewell dinner
combined disastrously with the sheer joy of freedom; he never
completed his ride 'home'. He was put in rapid turnaround by
the would-be owner who didn't want a dog that 'got car-sick'.
Several months (many, many months in 'dog months') passed. Stiff-legged
and urine-stained, he was sprung a second time. Again the farewell
dinner, again, the tossing of the cookies! "He was shaking
and scared", remembers George Billeci. "He thought
he would have to go back. But I told him he would never have
to go back."
a volunteer, had come representing the English Springer Spaniel
Club of Long Island--Rescue. George was supposed to pick up
the dog (they said his name was 'Breyer'), hold him overnight,
and then deliver him to a 'foster home'. (George's boss had
given him the afternoon off to work for the "Doggie Underground
Railroad"). While 'Breyer' lived with a foster family,
the rescue club would work to find a him permanent home. That
was the way it was supposed to happen.
was supposed to spend the night sleeping on the floor. That
didn't happen either. The following morning, still reeking,
but now well-snuggled, 'Breyer' was dropped off at the groomer
for a shower and a shave. Spaniel fur requires continuous attention,
more attention than what was available at the shelter. "You
poor, deformed dog", George thought as he exchanged eye-contact
with his departing ward.
A few hours
later, George was back in the waiting room. "He's been
groomed before," he was told. "You can tell by how
well he behaved". For many rescue dogs, the past is a mystery,
a blank page. This was a clue! And then out he walked, with
a blue bow attached to his shelter-issue collar. The charade
was over; the mask had dropped. The 'deformities' were in reality
thick, matted hair that had been cut away. The direct, inquisitive
gaze remained the same. 'Breyer', indeed… George was face-to-muzzle
with his new life's companion: Handsome. Handsome of New York