Schoep, the famous Lake Superior dog, dies at age 20

Categories: Animals
Schoep_July15.jpg
The last photo that Unger posted of Schoep, on July 15.
When Hannah Stonehouse Hudson snapped a photo of her friend John Unger cradling his dog Schoep in Lake Superior last year, Schoep's vet had estimated that the 19-year-old dog had only two weeks to live.

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But then Hudson's photo went viral. As millions viewed it, they also sent in more than $25,000 in unsolicited donations to ease the arthritic Schoep's pain. When we talked to him last year, Unger was in the process of establishing "Schoep's Legacy Foundation," and putting the contributions toward weekly veterinary treatments.

Those treatments helped turn back the clock for Schoep, who had been with Unger since he was a puppy of eight months. Instead of two weeks, he got one more year of swims, walks, and tail-wags.

Yesterday, Unger told Schoep's nearly 200,000 Facebook fans that, on Wednesday -- nearly a year after the photo of them reached millions -- the 20-year-old dog had passed.

Unger, who shared with City Pages last year that Schoep had helped him through his own battle with depression, posted the news with a photo of a paw print in the sand, and the promise, "more information in the days ahead." The announcement has been shared 20,665 times as of this writing, and received more than 32,000 "likes" and more than 58,000 sympathetic comments.

Here's the photo that first captured Schoep and Unger's bond:
John Unger and Schoep.jpg
Hannah Stonehouse Hudson
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