What kinds of animals are part of your family?
We both have had dogs (and other pets) as part our families most of our lives. Currently Diesel occupies a special place in our hearts. He is a 2.5-year-old Weimaraner.
Who are the other members of your family?
Steven has lived in Madison for 30 years. He currently works for National Dairy Herd Improvement Association as general manager. Philip works for Zimbrick Automotive Group, including the last three as service manager for MINI of Madison.
We’ve been in a domestic partnership for six wonderful years. In addition to careers and family, we are strong supporters of AIDS Network & the ACT Rides, along with Canine Assistants and Great Lakes Weimaraner Rescue.
We are also honored with a great extended family that is an important part of Diesel’s life. Whether it is a vacation when Diesel cannot join or riding/crewing in the ACT Ride, Uncles Steve (Beavers), Bill (Strelow), and Nick (Moon) have been there for our little man.
How did you come to have these animals in your family?
We discussed both the adoption of a rescue or starting with a young dog and ultimately decided on working with a quality breeder in Southern Illinois.
We were both extremely lucky to have employers that embraced the addition and the responsibilities associated with a new puppy. Steven’s office is dog friendly, and Diesel became a regular there. Philip’s coworkers at MINI of Madison threw a “baby” shower at work for Diesel with a dog-themed lunch buffet and the works.
How does Diesel meet your needs?
While everyone has said this many times, the short answer is unconditional love.
How do you meet his needs?
It goes without saying that great food, exercise, and grooming are essential. Weimaraners love to run and play, so we make sure there are opportunities for both. As he has no undercoat we make sure he has jackets (stylish, of course) to keep him warm. Started at five months of age, Diesel spends at least two days a week at SpaWoof, enjoying exercise, mental stimulation, and socialization with other dogs. In addition to the crew at SpaWoof, keeping an eye on Diesel’s health is Dr. June Brooks and her awesome staff at Northside Animal Hospital.
On the more practical side, we set up a joint savings account for Diesel at UW Credit Union to provide for the usual and unexpected expenses. Further, we have included provisions for custody and care in our estate planning documents for him (or any other dogs that may be part of our family in the future).