There’s something about Sam. Our beautiful yellow Lab who we believe will be turning 11 this year is still all sweet puppy. When we leave for the morning commute, he is sure to hug us that way doggies do, pushing his head into our knees and standing still except for, of course, his impressive tail, which seems to be in perpetual motion. Once good-byes are said, he wanders off to a favorite place to contemplate and dream a little too. On the days we stay home, Sam quietly follows us from room to room. He is a constant companion. His presence is huge, beyond the 110 pounds of space he takes up. He is in our hearts and the hearts of our other doggies. I oftentimes wish that I could be more like Sam. No matter what has come his way, he has remained a gentleman, and whenever the appropriate occasion arises, a frolicking puppy.

When Sam was diagnosed with diabetes about eight months ago, his world changed, but you would not really know it by his demeanor. He has embraced the new diet and new medications including his insulin injections twice a day. As only Sam could, he has convinced our other dogs that it is a privilege to have these needs and so they oftentimes line up for their injections too. With fanfare, Gary and I pretend to be giving them shots and we all dance around the kitchen afterwards as treats are given to those who did not get a shot and to the one who did.

Sam has still been greeting us with much enthusiasm when we return home at the end of the day. He still remains that faithful sweet companion, but there is something missing of late. As the diabetes-related cataracts have taken over Sam’s beautiful, loving, big brown eyes, there has been trepidation in his steps and a little less jumping and playfulness unless one of the other dogs, or Gary or I are guiding him. He needs a little extra help finding things like his favorite toy, but he is still stunning and a magnificent creature. We are blessed to be a part of his family.

We recently learned from our amazingly wonderful veterinarian, Dr. Hammond, that Sam might be a candidate for eye surgery, which could cure his blindness. This week we will begin to have conversations with the specialists with the intense hope that this is something that we can do for Sam. It will be expensive, but Gary and I have already made plans for how we can pull together the funds. From the moment we learned of this possibility, it was never a question of whether or not to pursue it. How could we not? There is just something about Sam.

If you don’t have a Sam in your life, but would like to have one, you can visit the Wright-Poling Pickaway County Dog Shelter at 21253 Ringgold Southern Rd, Circleville, OH 43113, call them at 740-474-3741 or visit them on Facebook.

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