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Setter Tails

Happy Rescue stories to make your Setter day!


Buddy aka Bud-Man

Buddy came to us as a senior in September of 2015, from a shelter in Ky. My husband and I agreed to "temporary foster" him until a permanent foster

or adoptive home could be found. He soon won our hearts and we applied to adopt him for our very own. He became a welcome part of our family

and the sunshine of our days.


Sadly, we had to help him "cross the bridge". Our hearts are broken and the house feels a bit "empty" even though we have his 3 other "siblings"

to keep us going. He is still very much missed.


We are so grateful to A Better Setter English Setter Rescue for making it possible to save Buddy and bring him into our lives.

We had 6 wonderful years with him and he knew love and his people.


A driver saw the poor dog lying seemingly dead in the middle of a country road late at night and stopped to check on him. Adley, a seven-year-old, was alive but weak and emaciated, covered in fleas, and smelling like roadkill. His teeth were ground down as if he had been kept in a kennel all his life.  

ABESR quickly stepped up to help this poor boy without knowing his condition.   Adley had old pelvic fractures, pondylosis, and a weak anal tone.   We have spent $4,714 treating Adley’s critical needs and providing the medications to make his life more comfortable. This super sweet and gentle boy has finally found love.   He was in hospice care with a wonderful family where he lived out his life in comfort and love.  Adley appreciated everything you did to help him. Without your help, Adley would have been left to a lonely and painful end.


Reba & Dottie

Herb is a retired man that applied with ABESR to find “a dog that he can cuddle with on the couch”. Herb USED to hunt and has had many setters over the years. In the meantime, ABESR was contacted about 2 older female setters, Reba & Dottie, whose owner had recently passed. The wife was not able to care for them properly so she reached out to ABESR for some help. The girls had been trained to hunt and they missed their workouts.  Herb didn’t hesitate to bring these girls into his home. 

“The girls arrived Saturday and we have been getting to know each other.  They are really wonderful dogs........well behaved and well mannered. Took them to the woods this am to test their off-lead behavior. They are well trained and worked exactly like I thought they would. So happy with them!”

“Again, I cannot thank everyone enough for the opportunity to share these girls. They are marvelous company and go a long way in helping me over the loss of my Dottie.” “I still am amazed at how well they have adjusted. They are a  wonderful pair and I enjoy them so much. Reba is the “good“ kid and Dottie is always off doing something."

Here in New England we primarily hunt grouse in the woods and forests. They really are not sure of how to do this but are getting the hang of it. They are becoming real New Englanders. At the other house in NY, we do a lot of open field work and they excel at that.” “The girls get a workout several times a week and will hunt as the seasons open. They do, however, relax hard and do a great “coach potato“ act!



Hank’s Diary and First RV Adventure 
After a little under 4 months of fostering ... A road trip with Dad in an RV heading towards "The Smokies"... Perfect! Dad gave me instructions on my navigation responsibilities. I was trying awfully hard to concentrate!   Let’s go!!! Keep this quiet, I'm embarrassed to say my bum was too big for the front seat, so I got the plush accommodations behind! It was so comfortable that I sort of forgot about navigating.


Day 1: was awesome. We found a big field with long grass and soooo many smells. I was so happy. Dad gave me instructions on how to BBQ, I concentrated hard this time -I like the idea of food!  And then I needed a nap. Later that evening I posed for Dad at sunset. I slept well that night.

Day 2: I had to tell Dad to get a move on. Dad introduced me to a game... Checkers! Very confusing, I just couldn't  remember if I was playing black or white.  And my bum was a bit on the large side for this. 


Day 3:  Oh boy.... ducks.... I thought I'd show Dad my best swimming strokes. I love ducks (hunting). Then I was sooooo tired I took a nap, making sure Dad didn't go off without me knowing (he's sneaky like that). I woke up to BBQ time again! I'm liking this!! We travelled a bit more and soon it was time to go home.  Oh boy, I was busy. I had to patrol the backyard and check for intruders and put the squirrels back in their place. Then I was ready for a deep sleep. Dad said it was a good trip and I behaved impeccably (not sure what that means but it sounds good). Everybody was so nice to me, lots of belly rubs and ear scratches. Coming home was the best part... back to my home and my bed.



Miles was pulled from a Florida shelter in terrible shape, having been abused and uncared for. He had severe skin issues and buck shot throughout his body. Looking at the photos will show you what good food, love and vet care can do.

I never fostered before, but Miles' pleading eyes made me want to try. ABESR pulled him from that godforsaken shelter, vetted his many infections, and transition was not smooth, but when stuff happened ABESR advised me (thanks Gay & Andrea).

The early troubles eased and things got better. Now Miles has a soft, shiny coat. There's strong muscle underneath. He has many friends, human & canine, and he likes to demonstrate affection for them. Under the leaf pile he stashes stolen treasures: socks, empty peanut butter jar, glove. He's great! Miles is one of the most satisfying things I've ever done.

Thank You Better Setter,




The woman who rescued him told me how she drove an entire day to the border of Hungary to save him from a pretty horrendous situation. He wasn't in good shape and they actually thought he might not make it! With many months of loving care he recovered and he could finally come to the US. We met Gus and the wonderful people who accompanied him at Logan Airport in Boston. Here was this sweet little guy who had just been through so much and flew many miles to get to us and he just kept wagging his tail and smiling up at us. The young man and woman who were with him said he was an awesome dog.

They also said, jokingly,  that if he doesn't want to do something he'll just lie down so you have to keep moving if you want him to go somewhere haha! It's true. He can be a little stubborn.

Understandably, at home he was anxious and didn't want to leave my side for almost a week, but again that tail was always wagging thump thump on the floor! He must have been struggling with the time difference or maybe just wondering where he was because he would wake up many times during the night and dance around my legs as I dragged myself out of bed.  He’s like an old soul, sweet, intelligent and very affectionate. He has the Setter "roooo" and uses it to welcome you home or if he is very excited! He just wants to be the best dog he can be and he is!  He's a little timid sometimes and unsure of new experiences and people. With some reassurance he quickly gets over his fears and goes back to his happy self.

Nellie seems to really like being a big sister. Gus loves her right back! Attached are a few pictures of Gus and Nellie. Gus knows how to strike a pose for sure! We think he may be part Gordon Setter, part English and maybe some Spaniel. We just love him so much. I want to thank everyone who helped make this happen!

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