Monday, March 16, 2009

Happy Birthday Samba

Samba was born on March 16, 2002. My beloved Bentley had died the previous December and I was heartbroken. I knew I needed a puppy in my life, so we adopted Tsar. I began looking at pictures of PWDs on the internet. With one pup in the house I had no intentions of getting another right away, yet the empty feeling wouldn't go away.

I contacted a couple of breeders and they each offered me a pup, but I declined. Then one day I contacted a Portuguese lady who spent half the year in Portugal and half in the USA. She told me she would be having a litter in March and to check back with her. I didn't plan on doing it, but one day I picked up the phone and called her. It was as if my hands had a life of their own as they dialed. She told me her litter had been born the day before and I could pick whichever puppy I wanted.

I still don't know why, but I mailed her a deposit and when the pups were four weeks old she sent me a picture. Rob and I looked at them and one was all like black just like Bentley. We chose her.

The day she turned eight weeks old Rob and I drove to Kansas City to meet her plane. She had been in the air for over eight hours, so I took shampoo and towels to clean her if necessary. When we unlocked her carrier she flew out, all charged up and ready to eat. She had not soiled her carrier and we left for home with my new baby.

Because Bentley was often called Boo, I named her Boo's Legacy Samba Dancer. She was a very happy active puppy and she joined Tsar, who was six months old, in attempting to destroy the house. We soon had them both enrolled in obedience class.

She took to water like a fish. It became impossible to pick up the garden hose without her jumping all over the place trying to get her head in the water. She joined us in the shower whenever she could and she slept beside the bed, snoring loudly.

I entered her in a dog show when she was six months old, but the day before the show she came down with a respiratory infection and Dr B said not to take her around the other dogs. We waited for the next show.

Her first winter was fun. She loved the snow and played until she turned into a big snowball.

We were ready for the next dog show and Samba won Best of Breed. Unfortunately, she didn't enjoy the experience and I had to really work to motivate her. We decided not to show her anymore.

By this time Samba had become my closest companion. She never willingly left my side. She is the most loyal dog I've ever known. She's everything I ever wanted in a dog and more.

We tried unsuccessfully to breed her, and then we brought Fudge into the household as a future mate for her.

I think Fudge is a bit more fond of her than she is of him, but she tolerates him. He looks up to her. Recently when the position of Alpha Dog became available due to Monty's death, Fudge was pretty sure he was getting the promotion. Samba had other ideas and within three days had claimed the position and put Fudge soundly in his place. He's accepted it and although he prances around like he owns the place, he does back down when she gives a little growl.

When Fudge was old enough we bred them. I was sure we'd have puppies although Dr B couldn't detect any sign. Samba had the experts fooled. She was carrying nine babies. From then on we became a team. I helped her deliver her pups and we took care of them together. I sat with her as she nursed them and she watched as I cleaned the pen and played with them. She was very proud of her family and liked to show them off to anyone who visited.

We wound up keeping six of her puppies and she runs and plays with them everyday. Even though they are all bigger then she is, she can still put them down on their backs if they do something to annoy her. She taught them how to play with her favorite toys, her frisbee and her ball. She also taught them her love of water. There's a scramble to see who can get in the wading pool first.

Samba is always ready to try new things. We haven't found a food she won't eat. She loves to ride and lets me dress her in sweaters, jackets and boots and even a life vest.

Happy Birthday, Samba. We all love you and are so glad that I made that phone call. I just can't believe that it's been seven years.


LizzieJane said...

What a lovely post Sue and Happy Birthday Samba. You were meant to have her that is for sure.

soulbrush said...

aaaawwww sue, this is such a wonderfully touching, heartwarming story, filled with love and compassion and joy and fate and fortune and doggyheaven...samba was and is the lucky one here too. happy boifday samba with big big doggy licks and woofs from snuffles and me. xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

momsue84 said...

Happy birthday to Samba. What a wonderful story!

Channon said...

Happy birthday, Samba! You are everything a dog should be, and you sure made some beautiful babies.

Dianne said...

Lovely post. I'm a firm believer that the right dog will find you, not the other way around!

Nichole said...

Happy Birthday Samba!!! Zeus is hoping you get a doggy cake just like his....

Nicki said...

Happy Birthday Samba-I remember she was one of the first dogs I saw passing through the clinic when I started at All Creatures. I was surprised to see a PWD-I had only ever seen tham at agility trials!

dreameyce said...

Beautiful post! It's so cool you were able to keep 6 puppies! WOW!

Gingerbread said...

Well done Samba. I have enjoyed reading your post, and thanks for sharing the pictures. best wishes Julie.C

gaylen said...

What a lovely girl and a lovely post. Happy Birthday - hope you all had a great party. g

Gnat said...

Happy Birthday Samba!! Such cute pictures!!