Exclusively Setters

Home for Irish Setter Lovers Around the World

The month of February has three unforgettable and extremely special birth dates for me. 

On 1st February, my English Setter boys, Beau and Hammer were born.

This is a photo of Beau with his Arabian horse brother, Khomet taken only weeks before he was stolen on 1 July 2003.


This is a photo of Hammer taken at the veterinary hospital on the Gold Coast on 31 July 2011, 2 days before he died. Hammer had survived a biopsy of his spleen which I was advised by the veterinary specialist was necessary to determine his illness even though he knew Hammer’s spleen would bleed out. Hammer required multiple blood transfusions.

I lost both Beau and Hammer in tragic circumstances. 

Beau was stolen from me on 1 July 2003 when he was only 2 years 5 months old. Despite the extraordinary extent of my search I have never received one piece of valid information about Beau. This is what usually happens with stolen companion animals. 

Hammer died prior to 1.10 am on 3 August 2011 at 10 years of age from a haemorrhage in his airways. He had been cruelly de-barked by his previous owner who was a registered breeder and exhibitor at the time. Hammer came to me on 22 November 2006 when he was almost 6 years old. 

Even though Beau came to me as a 4 months old puppy and Hammer as a mature aged dog, they were so alike that when Hammer came to me I felt as if a part of Beau had come back to me. Beau and Hammer were different too because they were each unique and special in their own ways. 

I will never forget the last lunch hour I saw Hammer on 2 August 2011. When Hammer heard my voice in the waiting area of the veterinary hospital he broke away from the vet nurse and ran into my arms. Everyone in the waiting area sighed. Most did not believe Hammer was even sick. All of them said how beautiful Hammer was and how much he loved his mum. 

I visited Hammer again that evening, only hours before he died. I brought a dooner with me because I hoped I would be allowed to stay with Hammer all night. He was not coping well in this veterinary hospital. No dog copes well in any veterinary hospital. Unfortunately I was not allowed to stay long at all, only about 30 minutes. I was extremely concerned about Hammer this evening. I knew there was something very wrong. I was ignored by the veterinary specialist. Hammer could not speak. His voice had been taken away from him. The terror and the pain were in his eyes. Hammer was ignored until it was too late. I know he would have tried to let them know of his pain, but he could not speak. Hammer died very quickly, and selfishly, I am relieved Hammer did not suffer a haemorrhage in his airways in front of me. I would have been covered in Hammer’s blood. I sincerely doubt even a human being as strong as myself could recover from this. 

I am writing a book about my experiences searching for Beau. This is taking me a long time to complete. All I will say now is that I will always carry a very painful ache in my heart for Beau. 

On 9th February my sweet English Setter, Rose was born. Rose came to me on 2 April 2006. She was 7 years old.


This is a photo of Rose lying down with Hobson soon after she arrived. Even though Rose attacked Hobson several times, he was so concerned about her, and so was I. I am certain Hobson’s concern for Rose is clearly evident in this photo.


This is a photo of Rose, Hobson and Hammer in the back of my Jeep with the horse food and the groceries. Rose’s tail is wagging, Hobson is sitting on the console in between the 2 front seats, and Hammer is sitting beside Rose. They were all so very close with each other. It is understandable how much Hobson has suffered, as well as me, since Hammer and Rose died. 

Miraculously Rose made it to her 13th Birthday even though she suffered so much in the 6 months prior to her death. She developed brain seizures on top of all her other health problems. Many a time I thought Rose would not pull through but she kept fighting to live. I wish with all my heart Rose had not suffered so much. She knew Hobson and I were suffering with her. 

My English Setters, Beau, Hammer and Rose all gave me so much unconditional love, so much devotion and so much joy. It is impossible for me not to miss them every single day of my life. My tears are a reflection of how much I love them. My smiles are also a reflection of how much I love them. I feel so grateful I was able to share a small part of their lives even though our time together was far too short. 

I am going to write a blog about my English Setter, Misty soon.



This is a photo I took of Misty with her Arabian horse brother, Hallmark today. It is not the best of photos but I rarely have my camera in my hand to capture special moments. 

Misty has been a complete joy for me since the moment she arrived. Is it any wonder ... Misty is an English Setter! 

Misty has many of the characteristics of Beau, Hammer and Rose. For instance, Misty feels comfortable with horses, like Beau. When I am walking with her, Misty lifts her head into the palm of my hand, like Hammer. Misty is starting to talk to me vocally, like Rose. Misty crosses her front paws when she stretches, like Rose. Most of all Misty gives me so much love and she is so devoted to me, like Beau, Hammer and Rose. 

Misty is my dearest girl and I love her with all my heart and soul. If you decide to watch the video of Misty with the dog treat on my ES page you will notice that when she looks at me, she softens her face, closes her eyes and drops her ears to show me that she loves me. This is what my baby English Setter girl, Annie did soon after she arrived.

Views: 281

Comment by karen chesher on February 11, 2013 at 3:37am

So pleased to hear Misty is bringing you so much pleasure and im looking forward to ready your blog all about her

Comment by Catherine Carter on February 11, 2013 at 4:28am
Susan you write so eloquently about all your animals. I am glad to hear you now have Misty with you, obviously Beau, Hammer and Rose will always be in your thoughts! Give a cuddle to Hobson and Misty from me! :-)
Comment by Kimberly Simmons on February 11, 2013 at 5:49am

The painful part of healing is releasing the sadness in order to embrace the joyful memories that we shared with our loved ones and to fully enjoy those that remain in our lives. I can see that you do this through your tributes to these magnificent souls. Thank you for sharing so much of your life with us and much love to Misty, Hobson, and Hallmark....oh and of course, Sam : ) 


You need to be a member of Exclusively Setters to add comments!

Join Exclusively Setters



© 2024   Created by Gene.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service