The End of a Heartwarming Dog Story – Schoep Dies

A heartwarming dog story – Is it the beginning or the end?

I will never forget the inspirational picture of John Unger holding his arthitic German Shepherd, Schoep, as he tries to relieve his beloved dog’s pain as they float in Lake Superior.  What a picture of love and devotion!

Well, you probably know, Schoep died on Wednesday.  He was twenty years old just one month ago.

I continue to wipe tears away as I sit here in front of my computer screen.  I do not know John Unger.  I have never patted Schoep.  But this is such a moving story.

Only we dog owners can relate to this.

The article I read was entitled, “Schoep, the Arthritic Dog Who Warmed the Hearts of Millions in Poignant Picture, Dies after Celebrating his 20th Birthday.”  The story is found in Mail Online at  It is written by Harriet Arkell.

Here is a quote and some pictures from the article:

The arthritic dog who became an internet sensation after picture of his owner soothing him in a lake went viral has died a month after he turned 20.

John Unger, owner of Schoep the German Shepherd, announced his pet’s death by posting a photograph of a pawprint in the sand on Facebook with the caption: ‘I breathe but I can’t catch my breath’.

Underneath the picture, which gained 24,000 likes and 49,000 comments within hours, he wrote simply: ‘Schoep passed yesterday.  More information in the days ahead.’

I breathe but I can't catch my breath: Schoep's owner John Unger posted this on Facebook to announce his deathI breathe but I can’t catch my breath: Schoep’s owner John Unger posted this on Facebook to announce his death

InspirationInspiration: The stunning photograph of man and dog in Lake Superior touched people, who sent money
 Tens of thousands of people paid tribute to the elderly sheepdog.

Karla Duhart wrote: ‘I will never forget you Schoep. I am so sorry John’, while Leah Mangue wrote: ‘Your story was inspiring and so heartwarming.

‘All of us should be so lucky and blessed to celebrate a 20th birthday of our canine loves… You were both so lucky to have each other.  Condolences to you.’

 The story of loyal dog Schoep, from Wisconsin, became an international sensation when the picture of Unger wading in Lake Superior with him was viewed by millions last year.

Since then, their story has served as the inspiration for a charity called the Schoep Legacy Foundation which has raised more than $25,000 to help low-income families care for their aging dogs thanks to donations from people as far away as Saudi Arabia and Japan.

Mr Unger’s photographer friend Hannah Stonehouse Hudson captured the heartbreaking moment between the man and his aging rescue dog in Wisconsin when Mr Unger realised his best friend was at the end of his life

Again, you can view the entire article here.  I encourage you to go there to see many more pictures and read the entire story.

I wish everyone the very best.  Love your dog today.

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