I Am Not There
Do not stand at my grave and weep;
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn’s rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush,
I am the swift uplifting rush
of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there, I did not die.
*Various sources attribute this poem to the one of the following authors: (A) Mary Frye (B) Joyce Fossen (C) An unknown member of the Hobi Native American Tribe
Benjamin came into rescue with his two siblings Cecil and Valentino. Valentino passed a while ago. Cecil is still with his wonderful mom and grandma
Passed November 2020
Renegade (WGSPR ’16) crossed the rainbow bridge today after a short battle with cancer. After Renegade was adopted in 2016, he got a GSP girlfriend Stella, ran a few 5ks, he loved to cheer on the Packers, party with his dog friends, and study medicine. Renegade is always loved and will be missed.
Adopted August 2007
Passed December 15, 2020
While we are not sure when Belle was born or what the first 6 months of her life was like, we know she was brought to the rescue from Alabama. She was aggressive around food and other dogs. The rescue requested we come immediately to relieve the foster family she was staying with that August. We put her in the back of our car and she immediately crawled onto my lap in the front seat. I fell in love; I knew she was going to be my forever dog. Although she never outgrew her extreme separation anxiety, she was the most loving, gentle dog I’ve ever met. She loved chasing squirrels and go for long walks at our family camp. 2020 was difficult for most but not for Belle, she got to spend every minute of every day with her favorite people, living the life she always wanted. She will be greatly missed by our family but especially by my son Emeric. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to foster and then adopt Belle. We are grateful we got to spend 13 years with her.
Adopted early 2019
It is with profound sadness that I have to email you and let you know that we had to let Angus go this morning. He had slowed down considerably and was having a hard time with his hips and weakness in his legs to the point of falling down and having problems getting up. In the past months, we’ve had to help him up and down the two stairs from the kitchen to outside. To compound things, Craig is having extensive melanoma surgery on his shoulder Monday morning. He won’t be able to bend over or lift anything for weeks.
This morning Angus had a seizure that lasted about an hour. He couldn’t get up without falling down. It took forever to carry him out to the patio, as he had lost control of his bladder and threw up his breakfast. We had a vet come out who was very kind and gentle. He tried to get up to greet her, as he loves people, but kept falling down. We said goodbye to him on the patio, as we had previously said goodbye to our 14 year old GSP, Claire 3 years ago. Angus would have been 14 on August 12th.
He went peacefully and well loved. I whispered in his ear: Thank you, Angus, it’s been a privilege. Which it most certainly has. I thank him for loving us as we loved him, even for the short time of 1 and 1/2 years.
Our Dear Amber…
In review of dates, we noticed that Amber greeted her mom in the white light, 4 years almost to the day of her mom, Angel’s passing, on May 1st , 2015. On April 30th, 2019, Amber had let us know she had had enough and was ready to greet her mom Angel (another rescue on the WGSPR Angel page) and her pseudo-dad Dagwood, who we lost on February 5, 2014.
So none of our birthdays nor our anniversary are good memories. Baxter we lost on Cindy’s birthday, many years ago, Amber on Ben’s birthday (2019) and Angel on our anniversary four years ago (2015). But we can say we have had wonderful memories of Amber, the past oh, 12 ½ years, as well as the trio causing all sorts of fun and ruckus.
She was quite the trooper! She had battled and beat cancer 3X’s plus; losing a toe, many lumps, etc. (although we think this last time she had some cancer in her?). Then she blew out a knee a few years back after the lumps removals and recently roughed out a bad staph infection, which we were still trying to help her heal.
But her weary bones said, “no more”. When we tried to get her out of the van, she really put up a fuss this time, almost saying (what Cindy prefers to think) “I’m tired of being poked, prodded and cut”, as she was ok when we took her into the pretty room, which would be the last room she would be in at the vet.
Amber was the best at finding chipmunks, squirrels, birds and of course, scraps that the hawk dropped in the back yard for her babies to train them to find food. Ugh! She was the most positive and kind gal you could ever meet. Even our dog sitter said, she couldn’t believe how calm and docile she was. She loved running loose up North on the back 20 acres (no electronic fence), but would always be within a 20-30 foot eyeshot of her best sleeping buddy/dog dad, Ben. She was Ben’s sidekick once Angel passed, making sure he took her for a 1½ mile walk every day. Would not shut up/stop barking until he got up, put his shoes on and hearing aides in, walking to the garage to get her harness. Even then she pointed ducks, squirrels and anything else she could point. We think sometimes she hallucinated, but then, to find out…there really WAS something there! She would also bark at him, to let him know he had to fix her something to eat, or go to bed, or…whatever. They had their own language between the two of them. She seemed to love people more than she did other dogs, unless she knew them well. Then she loved them dearly; i.e., Daggie, Angel, neighbor dogs, Jazz and Ginger.
We will miss our dear friend, Amber, as we have already. There is quite a void at our house, since she was the last of the 3 Musketeers! It is quiet, sad, but we know she has had the best of her life with us and all those who loved our dogs, including Cindy’s quartet BPS, who threw her a “puppy shower” when Angel and Amber were adopted!
But to know that Angel, Amber and Dagwood are all back together, raising ruckus, we are ok with her leaving us at 12 ½ years old. She had a good life and it was time to be out of pain!
Thanks for all the life lessons Amber…Ben & Cindy Zieroth
Adopted 3/21/2015 – Passed 9/2017
Tamba and I found each other on March 21, 2015. Tamba was already 6 1/2 years old and was surrendered 3 times. She came into my life just after I lost my husband of 31 1/2 years to ALS. She loved to lay next to me on the couch and of course she had to be to the back of the couch. I taught her to walk on the treadmill, fetch items out of the pool, and the down command. She loved to take long 4 to 8 mile walks with me. Tamba loved going for car rides and camping. She listened very well and was able to pick up on training skills pretty quick.
Due to some aggressive behaviors that Tamba exhibited, she was returned to the rescue and crossed the Rainbow Bridge in September.
She was such a great companion and very comforting to me. Love you Tamba.
Adopted 1/10/2016 – Passed 8/2017
Thanks so much for the condolences on Doo’s passing – while I am unsure of the entire chain of events, he was surrendered to WGSPR Volunteer Brian when he was 6 years old due to the inability of his owner to care for him. Brian would know the details – I believe the owner had become ill. Brian already had two dogs, so Doo made three – and only two are allowed in the City of West Bend. Brian’s neighbor complained. So Doo came to stay with me while Brian worked with his alderman to try to get a “Fancier’s Permit” approved in West Bend. The effort was not successful as the City Council did not approve it. So Doo became my dog, and it has been a great 8+ years. He was a true gentleman shorthair, an “easy keeper”, and was able to somehow build a relationship with my other dog, a pointer who is not social. I am grateful for the life he had, glad that many years of it were with me – and I will miss him. He had a great life. I’m attaching a photo of him from several falls ago, before he became a total powder face.
Adopted 3/28/09 – Passed 10/14/17
Anyone that has lost their dog knows the pain of losing the one they loved. Sadly, our love affair had to end.
Roscoe rarely left my side. How did he know that I needed that? He was such a calm & easy boy. He was good to everyone, including visiting dogs. He gave me eight years of devotion.
He celebrated his 15th birthday in June. Then in September, he was diagnosed with Lymphoma, & how long that had been there was unknown. It was a matter of a few weeks that he declined quickly.
Thank you to my daughter, Christen, who in 2009, insisted that I view Roscoe on the website. Thank you to Lisa Rossman & WGSPR for allowing this match made in heaven. And thank you to Terri, for seeing Roscoe & I through this past year with her support.
A quote from Henry David Thoreau gives me some solace when I think about losing Roscoe:
“I left the woods for as good a reason as I went there. Perhaps it seemed to me that I had several more lives to live, and could not spare any more time for that one.”
I just wanted to let you know that Jocko passed away. He was the most loving GSP I have ever had. I had him for over two years. My son and I saw Jocko on the web site for some time and we decided to go get him. It was a 3.5 hour car ride to Eric’s house to pick him up and the whole car ride home he sat on my son’s lap. Every time we went to the lake home Jocko turned into a fish and swam the whole time we were there. He always had to carry around his water kong and would do this running belly flop off the dock to retrieve it. Jocko became best friends with my other rescue Hawk who I have had for 7 years now. They would do everything together. Lay next to each other on the bed/couch. I took one last picture of them together just laying on the carpet together. I came home from work and Jocko could no longer stand up. I rushed him to the vet and they said he had heart failure. After we put Jocko down Hawk was wild for the next few days. He would look out the window just staring. I think he was hoping Jocko would just come walking in the door. I have a large fenced in yard and Hawk would run around the yard in search of him. We got Jocko cremated and a imprint of his paw. We buried him on the hill that over looks the lake and he is with my other dogs I have owned over the years.
Hawk is the white GSP
Jocko is the dark GSP
Intake 1/30/2016 – Passed 8/11/2016
Boone was a big, loving boy. He loved to snuggle and go for walks, and chew on tennis balls like they are a piece of bubble gum. Boone always had his tail wagging and loved to give Boone smooches.
Hospice April 2017 – Passed 4/20/17
Spike came into rescue on March 31 and WGSPR could tell he was very ill. Over the course of several weeks, we had him to multiple vets and ran tests on him. Spike had cancer that was impacting his heart, lungs and liver. WGSPR decided to end Spike’s suffering and let him run free at the Rainbow Bridge on 4/20/17. Spike was loved by WGSPR and his foster family.
Our sweet Archie (formerly Rebel), left us Nov 28 2016. We adopted him from WGSPR June of 2007, so we think he was 14-15. Archie was the best dog we could ever hope for! Sweet, snuggly, kind…endlessly patient with our daughter who was born a couple of years after we got him. Everyone was his friend; he loved everyone and everyone loved him- I can’t tell you how many fans he had! He was a favorite in the neighborhood with the kids all taking turns “helping” to walk him . He was the essence of goodness…We miss him incredibly, every day.
2002 – 2015
Brutus jumping up for a ball when he was in his prime. He truly was the quintessential German Shorthaired Pointer!
Adopted 6/23/2007 – Passed 1/19/2017
Over the years, I have had 5 dogs that have all had their own personalities, but each one having one quality from one of my previous dogs. The first time I saw Clover on the WGSPR website I knew I wanted her. When I went to pick her up, I brought my Father with me who was suffering from Chronic COPD and Alzheimer’s and sat at home in a chair watching TV all day long.
When we arrived to see Clover, my dad took one look at her and yelled come here beautiful, and Clover jumped up and gave him a great big kiss. With that, my dad said to her come on girl your coming home with me, and started to walk off to the car with her. Lisa from WGSPR and I just looked at each other and hurried up the paperwork so I could get back to get the two back into the car. Once we got home, my dad walked Clover into the house and pointed at the couch saying to Clover, “That’s your spot Clover” With that, Clover hopped up onto the couch and my dad sat in his chair and they watched TV together. She stayed by his side all the time until he passed in August of 2009.
Clover has always been part of the family and not considered a pet. She has been like my little girl, the child I didn’t have. She was full of love and always showed it by trying to lick you to death whenever she could get that close. She was also a combination of all the dog’s I have had in the past rolled into one amazing pooch. The last 5 years she has been the companion of my mother who suffered a Heart Attack in late 2011 and is now home all day long. Clover always stayed up with her late at night and then when Clover decided it was time to go to bed, she would give my mom a nudge and then give a woof to tell her to turn off the TV. Then she slept at the foot of my mother’s bed or alongside keeping her company while she slept.
Clover was one in a million, and the last dog I think I will have during my lifetime because of how special she was and the pain my whole family feels now that she is gone. We were so lucky to have been part of her life and will miss her and think of her always. I know she is up in heaven with my dad again and together they watch over us here until the day we all meet again in the afterlife.
What can I say about my beautiful boy-my sweet Valentino? I don’t want to focus on his illness as that is not how I want to remember him. I want to share the deep love he had for people and true inner beauty that was in his heart and soul.
Tino was a very sweet loving boy that had so much love to give and he shared it with everyone he met. He was silly and he loved to run around and play outside smelling every blade of grass. He loved eating dandelions and he taught my other 2 dogs that they were very good and healthy treats. We went for walks everyday about 1:00 and at 12:50 his internal alarm went off and he would wait for me to grab my tennis shoes and put them on. As soon as I put my shoes on, he would start jumping and barking because he was so excited to go for a walk. He led the pack in the walks, he wanted to be the first one to see the wildlife, the first one to smell for animals that might have been there earlier, or the first one to eat some tasty blades of grass or a stray apple that dropped off a tree.
Tino was a snuggler. Every time I sat on the sofa, he climbed up by me and put his head in my lap just waiting for some love. He loved to have his head and ears caressed and always fell asleep in my lap. Other times he would crawl up on the sofa, roll over on his back shamelessly and wait for his tummy to be rubbed. I worked from home and he laid under my desk every day while I worked to keep me company. When I got up to go to the bathroom, he followed me and sat next to me waiting for me to finish up. If I went to empty garbage, he followed me, when I went to put mail in the mailbox he was right next to me. When I had an errand to run, he jumped in my car and went with me. He slept on his bed next to me and if he would hear me stir, he would pick up his head to make sure I was all right. He was my boy, my companion and my protector. Every time I looked at him I could see the love in his eyes and I could feel it every time I touched his soft fur. I held him close as he was going over Rainbow Bridge, I kept telling him I was his momma, I have always been his momma and I loved him a lifetime and I know we would be together again. My heart aches and I miss him so much. I know it will get less painful with time and my memories of Tino will be replaced by smiles instead of tears. I don’t know when my time will come but I do know that my Tino will be wagging his little tail waiting for me.
Adopted 5/19/17- Passed 5/2017
It is with great sadness that we share that Risa found her Angel Wings on Saturday May 20, 2017. Risa was a very special GSP and here is her story.
About a week ago, I picked up Risa to bring her into rescue and I knew she was in rough condition. I was filled with hope, with optimism that Risa would finally know what a dog’s life should be like. As the week went on, that hope and optimism turned to sadness and heartbreak as I had seen what a hard life can do to a dog. The physical condition she endured for so many years impacted her emotional and psychological condition.
Due to her blindness, she relied on humans 100% for everything and needed to for her safety. What I saw with Risa is that she was very confused, she was anxious, she was weak, she had no real control over her bladder or bowel, she slept alot and if she wasn’t sleeping, she was spinning to the right. I took Risa to the vet on Friday and upon examination, we knew Risa had some medical issues that were also contributing to her debilitating condition and we had a very long conversation about Risa’s quality of life.
Risa was given the best of everything this week, lots of love, lots of petting, lots of food (she even gained some needed weight) and more importantly security she was safe. Tuesday night she got a bath and her coat was so soft and so pretty and she smelled so good! Daily she laid next to me at my desk while I worked and slept and got lots of ear rubs and pets and lots and lots of kisses. She was a very sweet GSP gal.
After the discussion with the vet about Risa’s conditions and several WGSPR volunteers and BOD members, we agreed that the best thing for Risa was to give her Angel wings and end her pain and suffering.
This was one of the most heartbreaking and gut wrenching decisions I have had to make in rescue, but I also felt I was giving Risa the best possible gift – her Angel Wings and allow her to run free. What I also gave Risa was a family to call her own as I adopted Risa on Friday night.
Risa, your paw print is still so very raw on my heart, but it will be there forever!!!! You were so sweet. I hope the last week you were with me, you realized how loved you were and how much I cared for you! I only wish I could have made it all better for you.
Risa – run free at the Rainbow Bridge with all the other GSPs, find my Raina girl and she will guide you! I love you sweetie!
Adopted 6/3/2012 – Passed January 2017
In January of 2017, Earl lost his fight with cancer, crossing Rainbow Bridge to join his sister Olive (a black lab) who passed away in December 2016. We adopted Earl from the WGSPR in June, 2012. Earl was our second German Shorthair Pointer after taking in a surrendered dog named J.W. (short for John Wayne). Earl was a handsome, sweet boy with the typical GSP Velcro disposition, whose “smile” and constantly wagging short tail was always there to greet us at the end of the day. Earls favorite inside pastimes included snuggling, laying on top of whomever was on the couch and playing tug-of-war and keep-a-way with this four-legged sister Bella. Some of Earls favorite outside pastimes included running in the yard, chasing geese and chipmunks, playing ball, taking walks, swimming, ice fishing and going for car rides. His keen and expert stalking ability, allowed him to wait patiently day after day for one particular chipmunk to cross his path. Earl was a master counter surfer who loved all things bread, and held the family record for eating a package of buns, without the bag, in 2 seconds flat. Loving nothing more than to be with his humans, he could often be found under foot, a foot behind or leading the way. Earls non-stop energy, curiosity, smile and wagging tail will be sadly missed by all of us who are honored and blessed to have had the opportunity to know and love him
WGSPR sends their deepest sympathies to Ben and Cindy Zieroth who lost their Angel in early May 2015. Angel and Amber were adopted by Ben and Cindy in September 2007 from WGSPR. Ben and Cindy gave Angel her heaven right here on earth!
A note from Ben and Cindy about Angel….
Just wanted to let you know our dear Angel has lost her battle with “something”, we’re not quite sure what, but really thinking it might have been bone cancer.
Her daughter Amber will miss her sleeping buddy, hunting partner and mom who took care of her all the way till the end. Her other sleeping buddy/dog dad Ben too will miss her by his side. On the Labor Day weekend when we first adopted Angel & Amber from the WI German Shorthair Rescue, she scooched right up into his arms and he never let go. We didn’t discuss, but knew it was the right decision.
She had many fun years up North, finding skunks, the swamp, chipmunks up the gutter and other critters and really enjoyed NOT being a puppy mill dog any longer, once she became a Zieroth. Initially she wore a rut from maple tree in front to the maple tree in back, the first year at our house, discovering the birds who literally teased the h___ out of her. Didn’t know what she was missing.
Well she’s together with Dagwood (& Company), who just left the trio a little over a year ago on February 7, 2014.
Again, I think of the poem Rainbow Bridge and want to believe we will see them all on the bridge when it is our time. Please don’t tell me any different, let us just enjoy that thought.
Adopted Feb. 2008
We were lucky enough to adopt a GSP named “Lucy” from you folks back in Feb. of 2008. I am so sad to say she passed on last year (she jumped a rabbit and pursued it into the highway in front of a car).
History: When we got her she was so full of energy I had to run her for at least an hour a day just to get her to sit still for 10 seconds. I wondered if she would EVER learn to come when called (3 months and a 50′ rope did the job). We have always adopted strays but Lucy was the youngest and most energetic we ever had. Although I am not a hunter she hunted every day on our farm and loved every minute of it.
We have had a lot of rescue dogs over the years and they are all special but Lucy was my personal companion. Lucy went everywhere I went and loved every second she was alive. I can’t even express the loss I/we felt when she died.
Adopted 9/13/2007 – Passed 1/19/2015
The ones who rescue us….
Jim came to us from Eau Claire Humane Society back in 2007. We pulled him into rescue, even though he was a field pointer and not a shorthair. We didn’t have to put very much training into Jim, as it appeared he was already hunt trained, hand signal trained, whistle trained, ecollar trained and loved birds! We found Jim a great new home and in 10 days he was returned, as he was just a little “too much” for this first time adopter. And when he came back, I jumped for joy, and adopted him on the spot. James Dean already was home! Jim was very handsome and knew how to charm the ladies. Jim loved pizza rolls, and rolling in paper perfume samples. And in the summer, he had his own swimming pool to take dips in. Every night, Jim slept in bed with me, under the blankies, snoring away on his own pillow. Jim rescued me at a time I needed him most.
Jim stayed with me for a little over seven years, before his body gave out. He was around 10 yrs old when there wasn’t anything more I could do for my baby boy, but give him the final act of love and send him on his way. Life will never be the same without him, but the thing to remember is we only get to keep them for a short time, because there are so many more that need us.
Rest in peace my Jim, momma loved you well.
Miss Miracle lost the short battle with Lymphoma New Years Eve 2015, taking my heart with her. She was a rescue from a large hoarder in Arkansas in 2006. All of the dogs were so fearful of people, and lacking socialization. Miracle stayed with me. She was an Ambassador for WGSPR.com, had her own Fan Club & blog. She became a little socialite working may pet events in Wisconsin. I will miss you momma baby. Rest in peace. Xo
Adopted 6/2013 – Passed October 18, 2015
Greta was happily and lovingly with us until the end of her life, which unfortunately came too soon for us on October 18, 2015. In late July she was diagnosed with meningitis, which she developed as a result of an auto-immune disorder. We were trying to get it under control with aggressive treatment for the past couple of months, and then two weeks ago she developed a lung infection and congestive heart failure. She spent much of the last two weeks in and out of the animal hospital, until yesterday, when we finally took her home one last time. Over the previous two weeks she had struggled with breathing, seizures, and an increasing lack of mobility, and all through the night last night she deteriorated very quickly. So this morning, knowing that her prognosis was terminal, we put her to rest.
We were very fortunate to have purchased pet health insurance shortly after adopting her, which allowed us to work closely with a team of veterinarians that included an internist, a critical care specialist, and a neurologist. She had the best health care available, and we did everything we could for her. The staff at the animal hospital also grew to love Greta. Indeed, she made friends everywhere she went. She loved strangers, children, the elderly, everyone. She was a sweet, gentle soul who never behaved aggressively or badly to anyone. She was the perfect dog.
We are devastated at our loss, because she was the best dog we have ever known. After we adopted her, she had a life full of friends, long walks, travel, and the best food and treats a dog could have. She was the center of our lives and she ultimately brought more joy to us than we ever could have imagined. It’s hard to believe this could happen as a result of being randomly connected with a dog put up for rescue adoption, which is a real testament to the work both of your organizations do. We are better people because of it, and we owe you much gratitude for allowing us to be with Greta until the end of her life.
We rescued Jazzer from a northern Wisconsin shelter on 6/24/14 where she had been surrendered by her “family”. It didn’t take long for us to realize she was very special. So sweet, so gentle and so loving. Jazzer had a tail that never stopped wagging. She was a dream in the home, never ruining anything, always asking when she needed to go outside. She played well with her young foster sister. She spent her days napping on the sofa and sunning herself in the backyard. She liked to un-stuff her toys and lay with them for her naps. She was easy going and thoroughly enjoyed her short walks. One of the happiest most charming girls we have met!
We don’t often have to face the final chapters of a dog’s life when we take them in but Jazzer came to us suffering from Lyme, Anaplasmosis and mammary cancer. After testing was complete it was evident that she was too advanced to do surgery on. Blessed with a wonderful foster family Jazzer stayed in their care until her final day 9/19/14 when they lovingly took her to the Rainbow Bridge. Jazzer has touched all of us at WGSPR. She touched everyone she met and in her last chapter she was very loved, spoiled and adored. Rest in Peace our sweet girl, we love you and you will forever be missed.