When I came home yesterday she seemed to have lost control of her bodily functions and her legs. She may have had a stroke. She could still walk but with great difficulty and was very unsteady. She seemed disoriented outside but still responded to my voice when I got close enough for her to hear me. This morning she wasn't able to get up at all. She ate some chicken and rice I had cooked for Duke, but she didn't keep it down and had no interest in food after that. She didn't seem to be in pain, however, and she seemed content on her bed in the little room under the stairs that we call the Cabell Cave. I left her there until it was time to go to the vet.
She was part rottweiler and part beagle, we were told. The rottweiler part really showed. Having had a number of them, we recognized the personality. Rottweilers are very food driven - it's a major focus of their lives, and Samantha was certainly that way. They also have a special ability to conform their world to their will. That's a little hard to explain, but they seem to create the environment that they want and need. Perhaps the easiest way to explain it is that they are very good at training their humans.
I met her former owners and it was clear that she had them well trained to attend to her needs. As soon as she moved here she got started on us. Although she was one of 10 or more dogs, and she was the oldest, Samantha's needs came first. We got up when she wanted to get up and she made sure that she ate first, always.
Samantha was partly deaf, or she maybe she just had selective hearing. I also think she became a bit forgetful in the past year, maybe some senility?, or maybe it was just an act. She would always eat breakfast in the morning and I'd generally do a second feeding late in the afternoon. Samantha, however, started advancing the time of the second feeding. Basically any time she went outside after noon she thought it was time for dinner. She had that "it's five o'clock somewhere" sort of attitude and would steadfastly refuse to come back inside until I fed her. Of course, if I did give in and feed her early, she would still expect to eat again when I fed the other dogs at the real dinner time. She changed my two meal feeding schedule to a three meal plan, for her anyway.
I will miss her. I miss her already.
|This is a picture from the former owners.|
Apparently Samantha was a biker at some point in her life.