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I chose this photo of Hammer taken at the veterinary hospital on 31 July 2011 because it shows his extraordinary courage as well as his beauty even though he was 10 years old. I met with a veterinary specialist today for 2 hours and now I know why Hammer died. This had not been made clear to me at the time of Hammer's death. Hammer had been suffering health problems since November 2010 but his death was sudden. For 7 days Hammer stayed in the veterinary hospital and he fought with all his might to make it into remission after he had been diagnosed with leukaemia even though his airways were full of puss. Hammer had been debarked by his previous owner who is a registered breeder. Why Hammer developed leukaemia is unclear. Hammer died from a haemorrhage in his airways.

Hammer was a Grand Champion, as was his father and both his grandfathers. His grandfather Tybyrn Long John Silver was the first English Setter in Australia to gain the Grand Champion title. An impressive pedigree. However what set Hammer apart was his extraordinary temperament. He was the essence of a true gentleman with adventurous and loving ways. I feel extremely blessed that I was able to share my life with Hammer from 22 November 2006 to 3 August 2011. I wish with all my heart our time together had been longer but nothing can ever take away the unconditional love we shared for each other. Even though he did not live with me all his life, Hammer will always be my boy and I will miss him forever. I hold onto the hope that death is not an ending and we will meet again. There will never be another English Setter like Hammer.

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Comment by Susan Mogony on September 8, 2011 at 2:03am
I am so sorry for your loss. your Hammer must have had a wonderfull dog with al lovely character. He was lucking to be with you the last 5 years of his life. For you he must be a wonderfull loving memorie. I send you all the strenght you need.
Comment by Susan Stone on September 8, 2011 at 2:07am
What a lovely tribute to your boy! I am very sorry for your loss.
Comment by Cornelia on September 8, 2011 at 2:28am
Indeed a lovely tribute - so sorry you had to let go of Hammer - I'm sure he called himself fortunate to have spent his last five years with you.
Comment by JOANNE on September 8, 2011 at 3:26am
Susan I am so sorry to hear about the adorable Hammer. He had a wonderful 5 years with you and looked like he was happy right until the end, something that should give you comfort. Rest in peace gorgeous boy and run free. XXX
Comment by Sheree Parrish on September 8, 2011 at 3:59am

I'm so very sorry to hear this news Susan, your love and dedication was so clear to see, my thoughts are with you.  Run free at the bridge beautiful Hammer xxx


Comment by Catherine Carter on September 8, 2011 at 4:21am
I know how hard it must have been for you to write the above.....but you did it and very well written too...I know you tried everything for Hammer....I am thinking of you, Susan...........
Comment by Chantal McIlveen-Wright on September 8, 2011 at 5:04am
What a great tribute to your wonderful Hammer Susan, we all know too well this magic love story between you and him and how much heart ache you are enduring right now.
Re tribute Susan, if you are not yet aware, Michelle Webster (on ES) has a website where you can post a memorial whenever you feel ready.
Comment by Myra Thomas-Rhodes on September 8, 2011 at 5:30am
The English are such a sensitive breed, yet at the same time, stoic. I can imagine how hard he will have fought - that touch of stubborness in them. You will miss Hammer terribly, but how lucky that he spent time with you. Sleep Tight, Hammer. M XX
Comment by Nardi Rowe on September 8, 2011 at 6:10am
I am so sorry too for your loss of Hammer.  It seems obviously that the tremendous fight he put up meant that not only did he want to live for himself but wanted to live for his human family.  Rest in peace, Hammer.  Lots of love to his loving human family who are left behind to go on with life without him. How lucky you are to have this love and loyalty from their beloved dog who obviously loved you this much that they put up such a fight to stay alive..
Comment by Barbara on September 8, 2011 at 7:33am
so sorry for your loss. Run free Hammer ...


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