Below are some of the many success stories that we have to share!
We have a dog that needs a foster home pronto … can you help?
I’m paraphrasing, but that was essentially the request. We had just completed the pre-adoption screening at OESR and were looking at one dog when a second dog, General, decided he didn’t like his foster mom’s elderly Setter … and basically tried to eat him. So General was out and was being boarded with daily visits from his foster mom. After a mad scramble and about 100 phone calls (We’re in NY and General was in South Carolina) we found a trainer at a local hunting preserve in South Carolina who was qualified and willing to evaluate and train General.
The idea was to see if he was a mean dog (he’s not, but he is dominant with other dogs) and to keep him safe and happy while a forever home was located. And then the call came from the trainer …. Do you know this dog can hunt? Along with a picture of this handsome boy on point. Well … I hunt. The original plan was to adopt an English Setter that could tolerate gun fire so I could bring him to the club when I hunt with my lab. But damn! General was pointing!! So, the plan morphed …. dog number one went to a different forever home and General’s training was completed. Then we went south to meet him. We shot quail over him on an old plantation and fell in love. What a boy!!
General’s been home with us about 7 weeks. Our lab, Preacher, is very mellow and is happy to let another dog be the boss. They’re great friends; wrestling and running together in the yard. I’m learning how to run a pointer (very different than a flusher) and we’re going to pointer school next month. The plan is eventually to have both dogs in the field at the same time. General would point and Preacher would flush and retrieve. But that’s a ways away. In the meantime, I’ve learned to accept that slippers don’t really need laces, and that dogs lie at your feet in the bathroom. General is probably the sweetest dog I’ve ever met and is the toast of the hunting club and the best pal we could ever hope for. This isn’t his success story, it’s ours.
Meet Chester, the adorable guy with a patch on his eye. Chester is a Llewellin Setter that was surrendered for being "gun shy". He started his life in Kentucky, was fostered in Virginia, and found his way to his forever home in southeast Michigan. We were eager to get a playmate for our 7 year old English Setter, Freckles, a stray that we picked up (literally) in 2010. After the loss of our Golden Retriever, Freckles was lonely.
Chester was well looked after in his foster home, but arrived, understandably, nervous about yet another home in his young 3 years. It has taken a period of adjustment, but he is happy, healthy, and very much at home now with his new brother and 3 cats. He loves to window surf (i.e., watch outdoor wildlife from window to window) and loves to run. He enjoys weekly visits to daycare and the bark park. He is eager to learn his commands and now walks beautifully on a leash.
It was a bit rough in the beginning for all of us, but now we could not be happier with this guy.
Lots of love, patience and positive training have built up his trust and confidence. We can't imagine our home without him now.
We want to thank everyone involved in his rescue, foster, and transport. We especially want to thank Nikki for all of her support and patience as we adjusted to Chester and he to us.
Now Chester smiles and wags his whole body and we know that he is finally happy and HOME!
Dave & Debbie B
Penny is the love of our lives! She brings us joy beyond belief, after losing our last female setter, Trixie, just shy of age 15 in April 2014.
My dad introduced me to English Setters when he found an abandoned LLewelyn English Setter he named Freckles in Buffalo, NY back in the 70's at his job site on the railroad.
Since I've been married over the years, I've owned 3 English Setters: 1 male and 2 females. Prefer the girls!
Penny loves to play with us, play in the fenced in backyard, and goes for long walks in our development and to the beach in our development. Loves to flush the birds and enjoys watching the herons and ospreys. Oh yes, don't forget chasing the squirrels!
Kathy Edington was tremendous and supportive, quickly spinning into high gear to get us interviewed, scheduled home and yard inspections, conducted reference checks, etc. I highly recommend OESR. The process doesn't drag out like other rescue organizations throughout the country. Scott and Christina were wonderful foster parents. They helped us bond with Penny even before we picked her up, sending us updates and pictures.
Christina & Scott
Cooper came to us exactly four weeks after we lost our dog, Todd, to kidney failure. He was purchased as a puppy from a breeder but did not get along with the owner's other dogs. Somewhere down the line, he was sold to a man in Minnesota, who had the same issues. He was returned to the original owner, who then dropped him off at the Watertown Animal Shelter in Wisconsin. He sat there for about two months. It was around this time that I started looking at dogs that needed to be adopted and came across OESR's page. They sent me Cooper's picture and asked if we would be interested and, of course, the answer was yes!
Cooper had spent two months at the shelter then got right into a crate for the drive from Wisconsin to Colorado. A couple who was driving out to visit their daughter offered to transport him the entire way. Needless to say, he was full of energy when he arrived. At first, we didn't know if things were going to work out. All he was interested in was barking and tearing around the house. It was a really stressful first couple of days but we really wanted things to work out. I got him into emergency obedience training the day after he arrived and things started to settle down.
Now Cooper is part of the family! He loves to go for walks, although he is still working on his leash manners. He loves to play and rough house in the backyard with Will, keep the squatter birds in line, and rest on us or near us. We occasionally crate him but if we are going to be gone for longer than an hour or two, we take him to his "grandparents" house a few blocks away. Ann reports that he enjoys "helping" her in the backyard, keeping the squirrels away, and taking naps with her on the bed. He also has a human sister and three brothers who are home on occasion. He usually forgets when they are in the house and barks at them when he hears a noise in the other room! They don't find it amusing.
People need to remember that when they rescue an animal, we usually don't know their background but most likely it wasn't great. They need lots of love and patience. Todd was adopted and returned twice before he found his way to us and we thought he was the best dog. Now we feel that way about Cooper, who also had two families who didn't want him before he found us. He isn't the best listener YET, but he is only 2 and we know he will learn as time goes by. Despite his quirks, he is part of the family and he is here to stay. Losing Todd was so difficult but we are just so happy to have Cooper in our lives now!
Alex & Will
This past January 31st at 11 pm we met up with a transport driver in Chehalis, WA where we met our new puppy Tully for the first time. He was transported all the way from Grove City, Ohio to Washington state where he now makes his home in Vancouver, WA. I was fortunate enough to be able to work with such wonderful people from OESR and their willingness in making this long distance adoption work out for our family.
Tully has been a wonderful addition to our family. He now makes our home complete with his older brother Briley (English Setter 7 years old) and Izzy ( English Springer 3 years old) & 2 cats. He spends his days playing ball and destroying all other toys, chasing bugs, birds and squirrels. Tully is happiest when he is outside. He is going to be a great bird dog. He has had a few training sessions in the field and he is a natural. Although walking on a leash has been a bit of a challenge for Tully being in the field is where he really shines. He seems very happy and content running off leash and stays in close range. We look forward to taking him to our cabin in Eastern Oregon this summer I know he is going to love it!
Thank you OESR for bringing this sweet boy into our life.
Annette & Greg Snow
Samantha was used as a breeder at a puppy mill. She was only 2 but had obviously been forced to have several litters. Sami and her last litter were rescued by OESR. All of her puppies survived and were adopted into great homes. We met one of her sons, Mayo, and heard how she was able to keep her kids alive through all types of abuse. Any girl that can do that deserves a good home. Her boys and girl are on Face Book and we enjoy seeing pictures. We have had English setters for 45 years. We lost Mandy and Cass two and three years ago both at 18 years old.
Poor Sami has a rough life now. She usually has to get up with me in the morning and help her sisters, Tasha and Maggie, clear the yard of robins before coming in for breakfast. Then it’s a full day of keeping the red wing blackbirds and the squirrels from attacking. Evenings are usually spent watching the gold fish in the pond. Weekends she is tied up at the lake making the world safe from purple martins that swoop over her dock, plus geese and ducks that have the nerve to swim in her water. Riding in the boat or convertible to get the morning paper are also part of her job. At least one day a week she goes to the office with me and greats patients in the waiting room. I do wish she would join Tasha, Mag, and myself in the field looking for the arch nemesis.....quail. But, she is petrified of firecrackers and thunder, I think she will stay home with Linda.
Thanks to OESR and her foster mom, Christy, for rescuing her and nursing her back from near death. She is a happy happy girl with boundless energy. Her hair has grown back in and now has a beautiful swishy tail. Her ribs don’t show as much, but she is so busy keeping weight on her is a chore. She is a welcome member of our family!
Phill and Linda Bly
No one knows the true meaning of “dog is my co-pilot” better than Raylan who was saved in the nick of time by the volunteer rescue groups Pilots N Paws and OESR. Safely flown from North Carolina to Ohio, Raylan got another chance at life, and found his way into our hearts. He is showered with love and affection daily, and loves every minute of his happy life. Raylan is everything this breed is known for -- athletic, handsome, smart and with a loving personality to match. Because he was the first of our four OESR adoptions, he has been a great example for his other rescued brothers of how wonderful life can be. He loves to run and play, and when outside keeps entertained by chasing birds, squirrels, and chipmunks in our wooded, fenced-in yard. Inside, his toys keep him busy until he wants to cuddle, and then he finds his way, once again, into our hearts by snuggling close for lots of pets and hugs. He’s such a joy to watch, and we love knowing what a wonderful life we’re giving him -- and are so grateful for the love he gives us in return. A friend once told us that what you give rescued dogs, they will give back to you every day, thankful for your having given them another chance at life. It couldn’t be truer of Raylan, as everything he does tells us, over and over again, how much he loves the life he lives.
Alan and Shelley Strohmaier
Older dogs CAN learn new tricks as OESR senior Dayton, who is deaf, now knows his basic commands through signing that we’ve taught him! He picked it up quickly, and responds with a wagging tail and a proud grin. Dayton found his loving home with us and another OESR alumni brother, later to be joined by two more OESR alumni boys. As the most senior of the four, he often takes on the role of “spokesdog” for them, barking on their behalf to let us know when they all want to go out and come in. He watches faithfully at the window when we go out, followed by heartfelt “roos” for us when we return which he knows will have us showering him with loving hugs. One of the many joys of having a senior setter is the companionship that he gives to the younger ones, and how they keep him young at heart. It’s wonderful to see him run and play with the others, exchanging wagging tails during the fun that follows. These rescued setters will tell you every day how grateful they are for the second chance at life that you’ve given them. Dayton is a wonderful reminder of the joy of adopting a senior setter, knowing his later years will be filled with the best life can offer a wonderful dog like him.
Alan and Shelley Strohmaier
Buck (Sir Buckingham)
We got lucky as OESR transporters when we were asked to pick up Buck. Within minutes we knew we were meant for each other – and he instantly became the third OESR dog in our setter-loving family. Although he is the largest of our rescued setters, he thinks he’s a lap dog, and happily climbs into our laps where he finds himself in total comfort. He has the gentlest nature, and looks at you with soulful, hazel eyes that tell you how sensitive and kind his big heart truly is. He joined OESR alumni young Raylan and senior Dayton, where the two younger boys (Raylan and Buck) keep their older brother (Dayton) young at heart. Buck is breathtakingly beautiful, and we often find ourselves commenting aloud how gorgeous he is. He draws attention wherever he goes, looking as regal as his “Sir Buckingham” name says, with a flowing coat and spirited prance that has everyone he meets enamored by his presence. As sweet as he is handsome, this beautiful bench setter is now living the good life – a life filled with happy times and loving hugs, and everything a special dog like him deserves.
Alan and Shelley Strohmaier
Jasper has found his forever home with us – a home filled with more love than he could ever imagine. He loves to be loved, and leans in to be hugged and petted with lots of “good boy” said to him, and happy tail wags in response. A middle-aged setter who is in amazing shape for the life he led prior to being taken in by OESR, Jasper’s playfulness, grinning, and happy tail wagging that tells us over and over how much he is enjoying life. He is the most recent of our OESR adopted setters, and joins OESR brothers – 3-year-old Raylan, 3-year-old Buck (Sir Buckingham), and 11-year-old Dayton. One of the most wonderful things is that they get along beautifully, having formed bonds they’ve made with each other and with us. Together these four tell each other their hard-luck stories, with the two seniors imparting their wisdom learned over the years, and the younger ones sharing their passion for living. The result is a life filled with love for all of them, where soul-deep eyes and wagging tails say “thank you” every day for giving them another chance.
Alan and Shelley Strohmaier
Sebastian is the English Setter we adopted last September. I had been looking for months at his bio and when Shannon sent me a private message saying why not look at Sebastian, she had been thinking Sabby would be a good match for our family. So I contacted his foster mom and we talked for hours about Sabby. She also felt he would be a good match and as I had secretly been going on the website for a few months and kept going back to his picture, we felt it was fate...and it was! We could not have even dreamed of having a better match for a dog that we had never met before.
We picked him up in Southern Wisconsin, and even after traveling so far, he was so well behaved and seemed to just fit right in. We are forever grateful to everyone who helped make this happen; Shannon, for encouraging me; Danica for talking so much with me about him and also keeping such great records and writing every little thing down so we would know his quirks; EVERYONE who helped transport him all the way up here!! We had left our then 8 month-old son at home because it was too many hours in the car for him to come with and he was sitting on the floor with grandma when we got home. We had our two dogs outside so Aiden could meet Sabby first. It was amazing. We hung back a little (not too much) and Sebastian took one look at Aiden and went over and sat right next to him. Aiden put his arm around Sebastian and an epic friendship was started. He is so good with our son, we could not have asked for a better dog for our family. I had Setters before, nearly my whole life, but never an English and so I didn’t know if they would be much different - I think they are - than the Gordons and Irish I had before. I am so glad we took a chance. I am so impressed with the breed and feel so fortunate to have Sabby in our family. Sebastian and Aiden are great friends, and Sabby seems to love everyone, including the horses too, but I am his favorite. I love how he always stays next to me. If I'm in the computer room while Aiden is napping, Sabby is laying on the floor next to me, and gets up when I do. At night when its bedtime, he gets up and follows me to bed and every night without fail sleeps with his head on my legs. What a wonderful best friend I have.
It had been a little more than two years since we had a dog in the family, it was time. Before I knew it, Shannon asked if we would be interested in fostering to adopt a two year old female that was found on the streets in Alabama. Not much was known about her other than she probably had been on the streets for a while. With the enormous efforts of OESR the day was finally here. The morning she arrived we were not sure what to expect other than a malnourished English Setter. Our little skin and bones girl arrived and all we could see was the beautiful little girl that would become Belle. She lost most of her spots, was terrified of cars, sounds, shadows and just about everything else.
We gave her food and a bed to sleep on and she gave us her love. We wondered how she could love after what she had been through. Well, after adding a lot of weight and getting a lot of leash time, Belle has become the girl you see here. Her spots are returning all over her body making her even more beautiful.
She claimed the bed almost immediately and I can’t blame her. She gets up every morning and comes to the dining room for me to say good morning then back to bed she goes. She has a very difficult life of playing with toys, long walks and a family that can’t get enough of her. But something was missing. She loved the company of another dog when we were dog sitting for our neighbor and we knew what we had to do, get her a brother or sister. Luke came into our lives and they act like long lost siblings. They are inseparable whether they are playing, eating or sleeping. She went crazy the first time we got snow because she had never experienced it. It was like watching a kid in a candy store. She has that look of content in her eyes and is so full of love. We know that she is where she belongs because her tail wags all day long.
Fate brought Luke to our family. The day we knew Belle needed a sibling was the day Shannon told me about Luke. A big handsome boy from Wisconsin. We saw his picture and immediately agreed he was to be Belle’s brother. Thank you to OESR for all work to care for Luke on his way to Pennsylvania. Calling him handsome is an understatement. He draws the attention of everyone around him. We picked him up in Ohio and instantly fell in love. He has that big dopey look to him but make no mistake, he is a smart boy. He is a gentle giant with a heart to match.
He truly believes he is a lap dog. His first night in the house he laid his 70 pounds lengthwise on top of me. He still uses us as a pillow. He lays on your feet, your legs, stomach, back, head or face as he sees fit. He decided that our recliner was his recliner and is quite comfortable in it. He also took over the pillows because he prefers to sleep with his head on a pillow. He is very birdy and can find a rabbit in complete darkness. He also thinks deer are prey and alerts us every time one is around the house. He puts up with Belle’s energy as he is extremely docile in the house. He loves the outdoors and is teaching his sister that it’s ok to be in the yard. For his second birthday we gave him a new family and a forever home and he gave us his love. He is our sweet, lovable, handsome big boy and we know he is where he belongs because he wags his tall all day long.
Fate works in mysterious ways. One day I am trying to figure out where I will be getting my next English Setter with all the characteristics I wanted; small, energetic, full of beans and must be able do agility. Then on Facebook she just appeared, posted by my friend, Nan, who volunteers with OESR. I wished for her and there she was!
Cheyenne was found as a stray in Indiana and taken to a high kill shelter then rescued by the OESR. I laughed when I saw the papers because they had named her "Birdy" at the shelter, boy, they were right on. It didn't take long for me to realize why she was a stray, she is a runner and running was all she focused on. She is non-stop, whether its laps in the yard or window to window inside. I still can't believe how my other English Setters ignore her as she jumps right over them to get to the next window, silly girl. As night arrives and darkness sets in, she finally settles down and cuddles up for the night.
From day one I have worked with her, she has been training in agility and learning lots of tricks. Focus and having a job has been a huge benefit in her life. In just 8 months she is running full agility courses and we will be entering our first trial this summer. She is brilliant and a real fast learner. Not a day goes by that I am not amazed by her. We have also reintroduced bird hunting to her and like a true English Setter is a natural.
All I know is we were meant to be together, she needed me and I needed her. She fit right in to the pack and it feels like she has been here forever. She is definitely where she belongs."
I was contacted by Susan who told me about these two adorable puppies and mom who needed homes. Instead of arranging a transport I packed up Alex and Emma (my other two setters), and we made the 7 hour drive to Ohio to pick up our little munchkin directly from the people who were surrendering the pups and mom. The conditions were terrible. They were all living outside in a kennel with two plastic doghouses and three adult dogs and all the pups. They ate, slept, pooped, and peed in the small 10x10 space. I picked up this filthy poop and pee covered 14 week old baby girl and headed the 7 hours back home. She instantly took over my life and became my Velcro dog. She is now almost three years old and quite a talker and makes me laugh all day long. She has so much personality, and I am so very grateful to OESR for bringing her into my life. I don't know what I would do without her!
I lost my sweet Addie Mae setter at 13 years and decided her brother Jasper, another setter, and I, needed another little girl setter to love. I found Daisy Mae's photo and bio on your website. I drove to Kentucky & met volunteer drivers & adopted her & drove her back to Pennsylvania. My vet discovered she had breast cancer on her initial vet visit. I was devastated and knew if I didn't try to help she would be euthanized. I put her through 2 mastectomy surgeries. She accepted everything like a total trooper! She didn't know me, my vet, or had ever even known snow & there she was wrapped like a mummy in bandages staggering outside to go the bathroom like an angel in the winter weather! I am thrilled and thankful to say that was almost 5 years ago and she is preciously still going strong! Because of my blessing of sharing her life with her, I have been volunteering for the past 4 years to drive other rescue dogs so they too will get a chance for a better life. I absolutely LOVE driving rescue transports! It is my passion and I try to help most weekends! I have gotten my friends involved in transporting also! It is the most rewarding thing to help these dogs! (And a couple of cats too) Of all of the hundreds of dogs that I have transported, the English Setters are always the most loving, sweet, trusting, & beautiful dogs!
We were looking for just the right dog to join our life. I had an Irish Setter when I was young and she was a great dog but we did our research and decided an English Setter was the dog for us. We saw OESR was based in Ohio and the rest is a beautiful love story. Cooper came to his forever home in 2012. He has adapted to city life and is the companion of dreams.
When we saw the picture of this skinny boy chained outside in the March 2011 freezing cold we knew we had to do something. But, were we ready to foster? No, but he needed us. The chain had caused permanent damage to his throat. He had scars from being attacked by other dogs. He was flea and tick infested, but this WAS his life. We officially adopted him in August 2011. It was meant to be. We are so glad we took the plunge with him. You CAN make a difference!
My husband saw Pirate's picture on your website & saw his loving spirit. It melted his heart. When he came for his visit it was like he knew where he belonged. Pirate is the best family addition to our family! He just gets better every day.
-Jeff and Kim
Sadie was an owner surrender. She had owned a boy who moved out if his parents house. When he was moved out so was she. She went from being in a warm bed to an outdoor kennel. The owners realized she wasn't getting the best life she should and they turned to OESR for help. Sadie was fostered by a wonderful family until she came to us in March of 2012. She now lives her life as an indoor dog with her adopted sister Billie. She loves being outside to chase squirrels, birds, rabbits and deer. We love her a million times over and are thankful to OESR for helping her find is!
- Julie & Jason