Cobey was just like every other 6-month-old puppy to come into rescue…happy and cute as a button. Sadly, Cobey was different in one way. He had contracted canine distemper before coming to ACES and died within a month of arriving at his foster home. We are devastated by his loss. The ACES Board and Cobey’s foster family hope that Cobey’s death was not in vain. We hope that his short life serves as a testimony to the importance of vaccinations. If Cobey had been vaccinated early in his puppy life, he could have lived a long, healthy life.

Although Cobey was sick when he arrived at his foster home, he did his best to keep up with the other dogs and loved being in the backyard to watch the squirrels and the birds at the feeders. Cobey was a smart little pup who housetrained immediately and enjoyed his daily walks. And, of course, he soaked up all the love and affection given to him by his foster family. In the beginning, we discovered that Cobey had a heavy parasite burden and seemed to be fighting pneumonia. Cobey wasn't eating and was losing weight. His foster family did their best to tempt him with the best-tasting food they could offer. After several trips to the vet and weeks on antibiotics, Cobey soon became wobbly on his pegs. The vet was finally able to diagnose that Cobey most likely had contracted distemper. Even as Cobey entered the neurological phase of his disease, he would wag his tail and respond to his foster family. Cobey’s foster family spent every minute of the day and night by his side. Cobey’s condition rapidly went downhill as his body constantly twitched and succumbed to seizures. The vet recommended euthanasia once it was clear that Cobey would not recover.

Cobey’s foster family wants to remember Cobey as the happy chap that he was. Here are their memories of him:

It is just incredible how such a cute, little puppy can take up such a huge place in our lives. That is exactly what Cobey did. Small in stature but big in character. His love and affection were unprecedented. We will always have fond memories of our sweet Little Man: how he wagged his tail at the the mention of his name, how he would crawl up on the couch next to you and give you a little butterfly kiss on your chin, and how he got on so well with our three setters, Beau, Bertie and Beth. He especially had a soft spot for Beau, his friend, mentor, and fellow lovebug. He loved to jump up on Beau and nibble his ears. Cobey also loved to try to race and keep up with the others even when they were being rambunctious and knocked him over. On his walks, he would trot along with the other dogs and was starting to do his little setter “proto-point” when the other dogs went into hunt mode. He was great on the lead and never pulled, ever the gracious little gentleman. Smart as a whip, Cobey really didn’t need housetraining. He knew from the beginning what to do and never had an accident in the house. Everyone who met him instantly fell in love with his cute looks and sweet nature. When Mary first went to pick up Cobey, she took Ross, our daughter’s boyfriend, with her. Cobey cuddled with Ross all the way home. He settled into the house instantly. He loved to cuddle with our daughter, Mary Madison. He’d lay on her chest and go to sleep. We were blessed to have been able to nurture Cobey for a short period of time, and he has made a profound impact on our whole family. We will cherish very fond memories of him as he joins our treasured Belle (whose time also came too soon).

Happy squirrel-hunting, our Little Man—we miss you so much.

Mark, Mary, Mary Madison, Ross, and setters Beau, Bertie, and Beth