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We brought Samson home at the age of 8 weeks old and when we asked our young granddaughters to help give him a middle name the oldest piped up and said “Lucky”! She was wise enough at age 5 to say “Any dog that is lucky enough to come live at your house should have Lucky as his middle name”! Little did we know that we were the ones that would be so lucky to have Samson in our lives.

While Samson proved to be a challenging puppy (everything went in his mouth–and we mean everything) we all worked through that time and he turned out to be a fine canine citizen and lived to the age of 12. Samson was full of life and lived it to the fullest. He was sweet, funny, handsome, loyal, fierce when he needed to be, sometimes a scaredy-cat, the best car rider ever, and was always happy to see you. He loved going for walks (especially at the Sandy River Delta where he could be off leash and get in the water), going for car rides with his dad, greeting all the kids trick or treating at Halloween, getting a puppaccino from Starbucks, going for walks with his girlfriend (a black lab named Alagna), playing with all his dog and human friends at DogTown (doggie daycare), long walks on the beach (as well as digging dip holes and peeing on abandoned sand castles), drinking from his water bottle or the hose, getting the occasional plain hamburger from McDonald’s, and kissing anyone who would let him.

We always admired Sam’s ability to easily and happily make friends (especially human ones) with everyone he met on his walks or travels. He was the epitome of joy almost each and every day of his life. But most importantly, he gave us unconditional love which we cherished every day. He would run and greet us like he hadn’t seen us in days even though it may have only been just 5 minutes and always with a big smile and lots of love.

A year ago this month Samson became critically ill and was diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma. His prognosis was grim and we were devastated. Through excellent treatment at VCSS and just plain love and our willpower to help him we got to spend seven more months with him–and they were good, quality months. We are grateful for the care he received. Finally, as Samson gave us his unconditional love, we also gave him our unconditional love and consider ourselves grateful and Blessed to have shared these 12 years with him as a family member.

– Sandra and Mike F.