My dear, sweet, friend, Sam, passed away last night. It was very sudden, and I believe he was sleeping. At least I can say it was peaceful. He had a very happy weekend and a wonderful afternoon, and I'm happy that his last few days were joyful.
Sam came to us as a stray when he was about 4-6 years old. He would circle the neighborhood and go to a few "suckers" (like us) who he knew would give him food. He also loved to play with the dogs we had at the time. After awhile, we had come to love him, but we just had not officially adopted him. That's when the neighbor shot him.
The neighbor behind our house shot him in his front left shoulder, which he had to have amputated. After an amputation, heartworm treatment, and a neutering, we decided he was ours.
Since that day, Sam has filled our lives with joy and amusement. Summer months were spent laughing at him as he tried to catch flies with his mouth. Evenings were spent trusting him to watch over and protect us from harm. Mom loves to talk about his multiple barks. He had one for people, one for dogs, and one for poop. Most of the time, though, we just enjoyed cuddling with him and loving him.
As the days passed, and Sam got older, his life did get a bit harder. His leg began to give him trouble, showing the wear and tear from all the extra use. New puppies entered the house, which made Sam seem older. It was easy to tell he really didn't want the puppies around all the time. That being said, he was still happy as long as he had food to eat, a bone to chew, and people to love him. And we did/do love him.
To Sam: You will be missed.