John Unger with Schoep in Lake Superior (Hannah Stonehouse Hudson/StonehousePhoto.com/Facebook)
A photograph of a man wading in Lake Superior with his 19-year-old arthritic dog captured the hearts of millions when it was posted online last month--an outpouring that inspired the dog's owner to launch a foundation to help low-income families care for their aging canines.
John Unger says Schoep's Legacy Foundation has raised more than $25,000 since Unger and his dog, Schoep, were photographed by a friend, who posted the image to Facebook.
Before the photo was taken, Unger and his veterinarian had been considering putting Schoep down.
"Without treatment, John and I were talking about euthanasia at the end of July," Erik Haukass, the vet, told the Daily Mail. But through the unsolicited donations from people who saw the photo, Unger was able to treat Schoep and extend his life.
"Schoep is doing incredible right now," Unger said. 'The therapies that the people have donated--it's like turning back the clock a year and a half."
The foundation was created, Haukass added, when the pair "realized we had received more money than we would reasonably spend on Schoep's care."
"It could help another 30 or 40 Schoeps," Haukass said.Read More »from Viral photo helps 19-year-old arthritic dog recover