Of all of my dogs whom i love dearly, Sammy is the one who has most taken my heart. My husband just calls him my Boyfriend. He and Cleo came to me together when he was 13 years old. He had both of his eyes back then. Lovely, dark haunting eyes:
He had a tumor the size of a golf ball on his shoulder when he came, but which soon nearly magically melted away. He has severe arthritic and degenerative disc disease, which makes his back arch and all of his joints luxate so when he sits, a leg may stick out at an unnatural angle. He takes a cocktail of pain meds to keep him comfortable. he was never a terribly affectionate dog, he doesn't give tons of kisses and climb all over you. But he bonded deeply and strongly with me. At night he curls up at my chest so he can sleep in my arms. He always gives me a goodnight kiss, just a single solemn lick, before going to sleep. If another dog gets too close or steps on him, he goes after them and will chase them down to try to bite them...a funny site to behold! If I set on the couch to watch TV he will stand and look up at me, waiting for me to lift him up onto the couch, once there he lies by my thigh and sleeps. If I get up and leave the room and he wakes up and notices I'm gone, he will bark for me to come get him, even if someone else is on the couch with him. He is MY dog.
He injured the eye one day when I had gone to the shelter to pull another dog, we don't know how, but that night his eye was squinty and watery and by morning it was already clouded over and beginning to swell. We took him to one of the best ophthalmologists in the state, if not nation, and they tried to save his eye. At his advanced age and with his severe arthritis, I didn't think surgery was an option for him. But unfortunately the eye burst and we had to rush him in and it was successfully removed....along with quite a few teeth!
He does well with one eye, but when he gets mad at one of the other dogs, he will open the eye up extra big and tilt his head so it is staring directly at them in a display I can only describe as "I've got my EYE on you, you little whipper-snapper! If you don't shape up I'll have to bite you and show you just what a broken down old man can do!"
At 15, I know every day is a gift and I treasure it because I don't know how many more we have.
I just love my little old, grumpy Sammy man.
In a gentle way, you can shake the world.
- Mohandas Gandhi