Gone But Not Forgotten


On the 12th may 2012 a bright light came into our life, Brodie.He was black and tan, but looked like his feet and tummy had been dipped in cream. We had just lost Danny, our ESS to lymphoma and Minnie and I needed another partner for our walks.

We met up with John at Wren Kennels on the Saturday morning and Mike brought Brodie out to meet us and we immediately fell in love with him. We took him for a quick walk with Minnie to see how they got on and all seemed well, so we set off back to Oakham with our new friend.

He quickly made himself at home and loved his food, walks, water and all the love he was getting. We made plans for a boating holiday on the Norfolk Broads and I was so looking forward to seeing Brodie and Minnie enjoy splashing around in the river.

He was such a well trained dog who would sit, wait, stay, give paw and was an expert at fetching balls, but as the days went by he started to display more and more signs of aggression in the house towards my Daughters dog, Jess, our dog Minnie and against Pauline, David and myself. When he went into one of these rages he lost total control, it was almost like somebody had switched a light on and until it was switched off he was out of control. As he was our 5th Spaniel I wasn't going to give up on him that easily, although my family were now beginning to be very concerned about him and I have to admit there were times when he frightened me.

Brodie was such a bright dog and soon realised that when we went for the paper each day he got a biscuit off the owner, but Sunday morning she wasn't in and he didn't get his biscuit and was most put out. He also knew he got a Rodeo after his evening meal and a Dentystyk at bedtime. On Sunday 17th June, however, he went too far and I contacted John to say I would have to return him the following day as we did not feel we could trust him anymore, I cried all night after making the call.

The following morning I fed and walked him as normal and kept thinking “have I made the right decision”, but I knew I could not risk him attacking my Granddaughter who is a regular visitor.

Brodie was great travelling in the car and never murmured as we drove back to Stoke but I wouldn't have heard him as I was crying so much and when I got back to the kennels he jumped out and you would never have dreamed he could have had such a split personality. I gave him a big hug and kiss and John took him off to see Neil, one of the trainers for a 4 week assessment. I cried all the way home having to return Brodie so quickly after losing Danny has really affected me badly and I am now on anti-depressants and being treated for severe anxiety by my GP as I couldn't rest until I found out how Brodie was.

Sadly, this morning I have learnt from Di that after being assessed, Brodie was found to be suffering from "Spaniel Rage" and could not be placed with another owner, so with great reluctance was PTS. At least I have closure now and can hopefully move on with my life now with Minnie and our new puppy, Dennis, but I will always remember Brodie fondly for the 5 short weeks he was with us for all the great times we had together, the memories of him enjoying himself when he was obviously not a well boy. I have a canvas photo of him which is almost life sized and it will have pride of place in our house alongside Danny and I will never forget him. I would never wish the same to happen to anybody else, 5 weeks is such a short time but I fell in love with my boy as did everyone who knew him.

I would ask that breeders take more care when having puppies so that this illness does not carry on. And, for folk wishing to have Caessr take over their dog, please be honest when describing why you want your dog rehomed. It will save such a lot of heartache in the longterm.

Thanks to John and Di for all their help and understanding. Brodie you were one in a million and I know you know I loved you to bits, so please look down on us kindly from "Doggy Heaven"



My husband and I drove up to the kennels in Stoke to meet Rio. He came rushing into the reception area to meet us, rolled onto his back and promptly did a 'spaniel sprinkle'.

We took him for a walk and were in love. He was just the dog we wanted to share our home with. We took him home and found out what a character he was. He was truly a cheeky dog. We learnt that Rio thought it was his job to investigate every cupboard door that was opened, investigate the sides in kitchen and the dining room table and hoover up anything that was on the floor. He was possessive with food, so we fed every meal by hand, so that Rio could learn that hands were for giving him food, not to be nipped. That helped in his bonding with us. The 'spaniel sprinkle' when we arrived home after being out, gradually stopped. Although he always wanted a tummy rub whenever someone walked in the door.

We worked hard on his recall, in the garden he was fantastic, coming to a whistle and a treat, even when he was woofing at the cats sitting on the fence. Every day he would go the park and my husband would throw tennis balls for Rio to retrieve, mainly those balls which Rio had found in the hedges around our local tennis court, which he would do all day if we let him. In the woods, recall was non-existent, due to abundance of pheasants and deer to chase. However we enjoyed daily walks round those woods on the extendible lead.

Rio was able to tell the difference between a pheasant on the path ahead and a jackdaw. In the summer we filled an old dinghy with water and we would spend lots of time playing splash with Rio, to try and keep him cool, if we were not splashing him with water he would stand inside the dinghy and using one front paw would splash himself. He loved home-made doggy ice-lollies and learnt to recognise the sound of the freezer door.

Rio was one of a kind and we were truly blessed to have lived with him and will treasure all the good memories that we made with him.

Although he was only with us for nine months and the last forty-eight hours were most traumatic, we did sooooo much enjoy having him to stay.

Thank you Di for placing him with us.

Thank you CAESSR, so much for your help, advice, support and understanding in the truly hard decision we had to make, when we had Rio put to sleep.

Vanessa Geoff and Charlie


Abbie came bombing into our lives in July 1998, aged 19 weeks.

She had been "homed" twice and "returned" twice and within 24 hours of her arrival in our home we soon realised why.

But Abbie was a very special dog to our family — she shared a birthday with someone we had recently lost.

Abbie was one of a litter of 6. Her mum was a dainty English Springer Spaniel who had been found "wandering and pregnant" at Christmas 1997. Her father ? No idea — possibly a black Labrador.

The first few months were difficult and she tried our goodwill and patience to the very limit. She was very naughty. Abbie could clear a 5 foot fence with ease which she did and often. She was a fantastic and prodigious food thief — her speciality — steaks marinating in red wine and yes she drank the wine as well with no ill effects. Abbie could run and jump for England scattering all in her path. Her antics were always spontaneous and although she could be wearisome we never gave up with her. Abbie was a "free spirit" and this was something we were careful to nurture and protect.

In her quieter moments — yes she did have them — she loved to be cuddled. Her ears were like pieces of beautiful black velvet — as we told her many times. Abbie was just adorable.

We remained patient, loving and over time she grew into this sleek, beautiful and obedient girl. She was very biddable. An absolute treasure. We have been privileged to have Abbie in our lives for fourteen wonderful years. Abbie retaining her "sparky" English Springer Spaniel spirit until the end. It was important to us that she did SO.

Abbie passed away peacefully on May 17th after a short illness. Even to the end she remained loving, loyal and wonderfully patient. We will all miss her so much.

Our Darling Girl

Norma and David Edwards


It is with great sadness that I write to tell you that two weeks ago after a short illness we lost Harry, our beloved Springer. We adopted Harry 18 months ago and immediately he became part of the family, he was a real character. Harry was such a loving dog; he enjoyed his cuddles on the sofa and he never tired of chasing a ball. We all miss him terribly but are thankful for all the happy memories and the special time we shared with him. 

The Clegg Family (18-05-2012)


Dear John and all at Caessr,

It is with great sorrow to have to tell you that we have lost our number 1 son Marky on the 19th April 2012 at the age of 10years and 2 months.

Our Marky a real Springer Spaniel for 18 months of the time we had him he loved his life and found it so good running around and playing in mud.

Loved his life and enjoyed it true. enjoyed his holidays and life through and through.

His ashes will now be scattered on the places he loved.

Marky Petrucci. 4/2/2002 to 19/4/2012

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