A (Corgi) Nation mourns beloved Barney Boots

There literally are thousands of people mourning today over the loss of a little corgi farmer from Wisconsin.

I am one of those people.

RIP, Barney Boots

Barney Boots, a 4-year-old “farmer” who delighted more than 4,500 of his Facebook friends (many of whom were other corgis, or other breeds of dogs) with his many posts daily, crossed over the Rainbow Bridge this morning. His unexpected death is a shock to us all.

He had followers from every state and all over the world, and it seems he had the time to reply to everyone’s comments, even if it was a simple BOL (Bark Out Loud)! Barney Boots went out of his way to make everyone feel special.

Already, hundreds have posted on a Rest in Peace Barney Boots page (Barney’s own page was down much of the day but has since returned), many through tears. Hearts are breaking over a little dog none of us ever met, but who made us smile every morning with “I am now up!” posts (those simple posts generated more comments every day than I’ve ever had on one of my Facebook entries).

Barney would post often about his activities (“I’m inside now!” “I’m outside now!”), his family of baby steers, his hard work in the garden and his vacuum cleaners (pigs) that he had to keep an eye on every day. He had to run three miles to the mailbox and run 3.5 miles back from the mailbox.

Math and measurements were not Barney’s strengths, but exaggerations were. Green Bay  temps soared to 500 degrees numerous times this summer, and 200 below — with 20 feet of snow — last winter.

It was winter a few years ago when, according to Barney, he was thrown into a snowbank out of a truck going 80 miles an hour in front of his house. His mom and dad rescued him, and that’s how he came to live with Deb and Paul. At least, that’s how Barney told it.

He posted videos no more than 15 seconds in length. Often, they were of him walking, but mainly they were of his baby steers (he worked for Brandenburg Beef, after all). A simple little 15-second film of steers standing around would have us in stitches.

He would fain starvation if he didn’t eat his five meals a day, which included his favorites, gravy and ice cream, and just about anything else he wanted. He loved cheese curds and sloppy joes, he loved his Packers, and he loved his farm and his mom and dad. His “Daddy’s home!” and “Mommy’s home!” posts meant yet another meal, but also meant spending time with his favorite people in the world.

That little corgi brought so much joy to so many people, the entire Corgi Nation (which includes people and honorary corgis of all breeds) mourns today. And what he brought to corgis in need is what made Barney so special.

When his Uncle Ronnie (his dad’s brother) passed last winter, Barney started a fund-raiser to help CorgiAid, Inc. Barney’s efforts raised thousands of dollars for corgis-in-need organizations, including more than $4,000 with the “Coins for Corgis: In Memory of Uncle Ron Brandenburg” fund-raiser.

He was in the midst of another fund-raiser, one that suggested a “clutter-free Christmas,” to help a corgi organization. People posted ideas and others voted for their favorites, contributing $1 for each vote. At last count, last week, it had raised about $1,500. It was to conclude in October, Barney’s birthday month. Already, donations are headed to CorgiAid in honor of Barney Boots.

We all offer our condolences to Barney’s parents, Deb and Paul Brandenburg. As devastated and saddened as Corgi Nation is by this news, the pain Deb and Paul are feeling right now is unimaginable. Our pets bring so much joy to our lives that when they leave us, especially so suddenly, our hearts break.

To Deb and Paul, our deepest sympathies. To Barney Boots, thank you for all you did to bring so much laughter, so much joy, and so much help, to so many people and dogs.

Rest in Peace, Bubbles.


47 thoughts on “A (Corgi) Nation mourns beloved Barney Boots

  1. Run free at the Bridge and watch over all of us here Barney Boots. The Corgi Nation mourns our loss and celebrates the joy you brought to our days. We remember…

  2. Barney has been a near and dear friend.. Our cheese and beef love will always be remembered as the arguement that the beef Deb sold should be Barney Burger or Barney beef.. we would share cheese curd and cheese snake tales. Our heart is bleeding for Deb and Paul (both our dads were Pauls)… WIll miss you buddy

  3. Thank you for this! I have noticed some of our International Corgi friends posting the sad news on their collective Corgi pages. Corgi Nation is, INDEED, a Corgi UNIVERSE…….

    Barney Boots is, and will always be one of those special dogs that touches everyone.

    Much love and prayers to his mom and dad, Deb and Paul Brandenburg.

  4. Thank you for writing this Mary and putting into words what I can express right now. Such a deep sense of loss and heartbreak. Chris B.

  5. Thank you all for the comments and prayers to Deb and Paul. Went back and added a couple more things as I remembered little Barney Boots snippets. I laugh and cry, just like anyone grieving seems to do. Would love to hear/read other Barney-isms that I left out or wasn’t aware of! That dog had so much life.

  6. This is so lovely written for our precious Barney Boots. I am going to miss him so very much. Deb and Paul my heart just aches for you both. I am so, so sorry for your loss. RIP friend … Love always, Jeff, Tina, Ben, & Coco Wheeler <3

  7. So well-written. I am just beside myself at the loss of Barney Boots. Prayers of comfort to Deb and Paul. Tonight Cody (we call him “Bubbles” too!) will have gravy and ice cream in honor of Barney…and an extra hug. This is such a sad, sad day. Tears keep coming for a little dog I never actually met.

  8. I was in shock when I read the news, now I can’t stop crying. First time I saw a picture of Barney Boots he was wearing a viking helmet.

    He accepted my friends request and I was hooked every since, I had to see what he was doing that day, brought great joy and laughter.

    Paul and Deborah Brandenburg.you have my deepest sympathy and in my prayers.

  9. I still can’t believe this – RIP Barney Boots. I’m sure you’ll be helping look after all the corgis who have gone before you and get ready to welcome those that are yet to come. You brought joy to many and although your little life was short it was full of love and we loved you in return.

  10. Barney made us all smile every day with his “I’m in/ I’m out” comments. I would ask the corgigirlz if they thought they were Barney when they were in the in/out mode. We’ll never know what the vacuum cleaners are eating or get to learn about the finer points of farming. “Because I am a farmer!”

    I’m sure Barney isn’t resting on his laurels at the rainbow bridge. He loved his baby steers and his farm so I imagine he has all the farm animals at the bridge whipped into shape already!

  11. Thank you for writing such a wonderful tribute to BB (Bubbles). I have been crying off and on all day today, even though I never met Barney! He and his family have endeared themselves to all of us through Corgi Nation and we loved reading his posts daily. I know that Deb and Paul must be devastated with the loss of their “boy”. Our animals are more than just dogs to us, they are truly part of our families and this is like losing a family member. My heart is breaking for Deb and Paul and I will continue to hold them in my thoughts and prayers. I pray that this becomes easier with time and we will have Deb back posting on Facebook.

  12. RIP Barney Boots…everyday I looked forward to your posts; they brought me laughter everyday ….you will be missed <3 My thoughts and prayers for Deb and Paul….

  13. Every morning the first thing I would do was to see if Barney was up yet and say, “Good morning Bootsie.” I will miss you but probably not as much as your mom and dad. So sorry Deb and Paul for this great loss. RIP Bootsie.

  14. Oh Barney, my heart is broken buddy. I am but a bird, but you were a dear and very loved friend. I always looked forward to hearing of your exploits and you made me and hummum smile always. Run free at rainbow bridge sweet friend, until we meet again. I LOVE YOU. XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  15. I am so sad tonight, I didn’t know you Barney in person, but you made my Facebook experience so much better.
    I loved you “Im Up Now” Im Our Now” “Im In Now” like so many you just made my day. Frap free at the bridge little
    corgi boy. There are lots of corgi’s and others of the canine kind to welcome you home. I lit a candle for you today.

  16. I was hoping to be able to leave some gentle words of comfort here for Barney’s family and my Corgi Nation friends, but I am still so stunned that I just cannot find the words. Corgi Nation has lost a very dear and cherished member, and our community will deeply feel his loss. I hope that many others will join me in making a contribution to CorgiAid in his name. Barney led the Coins for Corgis/Uncle Ronnie Memorial Fund event earlier this year, a drive that raised over $4,000. I think that making donations to CorgiAid in this way would be a wonderful way to honor our dear friend, and, of course, save the lives of Corgis. A fitting legacy for a Wisconsin farmer.

  17. Omg im so shocked. I loved barneys posts. Especially the vacuums(pigs).i love pigs.hewould always crack me up.prayers to his family.

  18. Our 10 1/2 year old Pembroke, Winston, died six weeks ago and I still cry several times a day. It is SO darn hard to lose our canine companions. Oh how I wish they never had to leave us. It’s so, so sad. So, when I say, I know how Deb and Paul are feeling, I really do. I hope their hearts heal soon, and they’ll soon be able to remember their little Barney Boots without tears in their eyes.

  19. Well-written tribute to Barney! Words can not express the heartache I feel for Deb & Paul. My husband and I adored Barney. His daily posts had brightened our days. We will miss you, Barney. So long!

  20. There’s a guy in New Zealand sitting in front of his computer with tears running down his cheeks remembering the effect Barney Boots had on his Facebook reading each night. I looked forward to his posts and his stories. He made life a little more liveable and took my mind off other things.
    RIP Barney, you won’t be forgotten here.
    Cheers from Scooter and Alice in New Zealand.

  21. Rest peacefully my friend you will be sorely missed by many and never be forgotten. Our hearts ache and there will always be a huge empty space in our lives and on FB where you once stood.
    We love and miss you Farmer Barney Boots, love to your Mom & Dad

  22. There is no words to describe the shock of loosing one of your own. My heart aches for all the lives you have touched. Your memory will live on in our hearts. I will always remember your adventures and how much joy they brought. Thank you for bringing us in and showing us all what life is all about.

  23. Whoever wrote this really hit the nail on the head….pretty much this article sums up our little farmer, Barney Boots! I laughed and cried reading this…RIP Barney! :( Much love to Deb and Paul!

  24. We know what it is like to lose a furry part of your heart…
    And you know what Barney would say about your heart?
    “I’m inside now”

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