John and Schoep – Internet Sensation and Best Friends

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As a follow-up to the story, “Heartwarming Photograph Brings Donations Flooding in for Dog’s Treatment,” published on August 7th, John Unger and Schoep of Bayfield, WI, have become an internet sensation. Together for 19 years, Shoep now suffers from arthritis and hip dysplasia, a condition that affects his back legs. Schoep is most comfortable with no pressure on his body so John takes Shoep into Lake Superior, holding Shoep in his arms, floating.

“Not too many more times are we going to be able to do this, so every time now it’s a pretty special feeling, the bouyancy it gives him in the water relieves the pain, or at least some of it to the point where he’s relaxed,” says John. John ask Hannah Stonehouse of Stonehouse Photos to take just a few pictures so he could remember the special time he and Schoep share.

The photo has been viewed over 3 million times and shared 150,000 times.

Best friends for life.

9 thoughts on “John and Schoep – Internet Sensation and Best Friends”

  1. Well, I’m confused – glad that the fur child gets relief in the water, but then, there’s the walk home to undo all that relief, and, the walk back to the water the next day. Hummmm, did I miss something?

  2. Oh,
    My heart goes out for the beloved Schoep and his best friend, John who enjoys their time together. Though a float would still make him put weight on his limbs somewhat, perhaps he would enjoy this also?

    And if the arthritis is mostly in the back, could a wheelchair be rented or purchased to help keep the weight off? Humans have so many ways to help treat and deal with arthritis, even when we are in our most elderly years. I hope that Schoep still has many memorable years to come.

    Thank you for sharing the beautiful article.

  3. I am sitting at my computer with tears running down my face. When my senior dog was suffering from inoperable liver cancer, I made a bed beside her for the last 72 hours of her life. I held her in my arms, stroked her beautiful face, and thanked her for being such an amazing companion. The story of Schoep brought back so many memories of my experience with my rescued dog and how those last days with a beloved pet are so profound and memorable. God bless these two best friends.

  4. Las palabras estan de mas. Solo los que tenemos o tubimos alguna vez un animal tan amado sabemos lo que se siente. Quisiera yo darle a mi querida Luna(perrita de mas de 20 años) todo el amor, cariño, compañia y cuidados que ella me prodigo; todo es poco. Compartimos los mas hermosos y los mas horribles momentos de nuestras vidas, como es la llegada de mi hija(su gran amiga) y su partida, a los 13 años. Hoy nos tenemos la una a la otra, y yo le agradezco que este a mi lado siendo tan viejita. Ella no se va para seguir cuidandome.
    Un abrazo muy fuerte a John y otro inmenso a SCHOEP. Gracias por este ejemplo.

  5. One of the most heartfelt stories I have read/watched in a long time. The bond between this man and dog is utterly amazing. Kudos to John for the love, kindness and care that he has bestowed upon his dog. Simply an amazing story.

  6. Inspirational. Thank you John and Shoep for hanging on and setting the bar higher for human-canine relations. I wish my little bichon Sadie was alive today. I could not save her life at only 11 yrs and three months old and I tried through conventional veterinary means. It’s wonderful that Shoep has a partner who cares as much as John does. Single women must be throwing themselves at John! He is a truly good person.


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