German Shepherd Rescue of New England, Inc.

Waiting at the Rainbow Bridge

#310 Sampson

GSRNE #310
Adopted on February 21, 2011 

Sampson has crossed the bridge and is now playing soccer, his favorite pastime, with those who greeted him there. See below for Sampson’s note to GSRNE about his adoption and the happy times he had. 

Dear Friends at GSRNE, 

Well, it’s been almost five months since I’ve found my new home. I’ve been pretty darn busy, but I thought I’d take a few minutes break from my duties of squirrel watching and keeping track of my people to let all my friends out there know how I’m doing.

I went to my new home on February 21, 2011. I have to admit, I’m much more relaxed now and settled in, but those first few days I was pretty darn anxious. My foster family was so good to me and took such good care of me that it was pretty hard to leave. I even had to part from my good pal, Blossom, a sweet German Shepherd girl whom I just loved to romp and wrestle with everyday. I’m not bragging, but she was pretty bummed when I left… just saying.

When my new family came to pick me up, I was nervous, confused, and excited all at the same time. I was quite anxious during the long drive to my new home, getting up every few minutes and whining. I even got to show off my big voice when we stopped at a rest area, and I saw another pal in the parking lot. Geez, I just wanted to say hi! I quieted down once we got on the road again. My new dad tried to sing to me – to calm me down I think. Singing lessons might be in order.

I finally settled down a bit and then… we arrived! I didn’t know it was my new house yet, but of course I had to explore everything completely. Lots of new smells! At the same time, I had to keep my new people in my sights at all times – not an easy task. My foster family called me the “Velcro” dog and I think my new family understands why. Ok, so I like to be around my people. I am a German Shepherd, you know. Just doing my job.

That first week especially, my new crate really helped me relax and feel safe. Luckily my foster family (they’re so thoughtful!) sent along my favorite bed, along with my favorite soccer ball. I had my familiar smells mixed in with all the new ones. That first week was filled with new smells and experiences. Lots of walks, of course – I may be seven, but I’m still a very active guy! I’m also very social and everywhere I go I like to meet new people and dog pals. I’m working hard on not yelling when I meet pups on my walks but, geez, I just want to play. My folks are very impressed with how I get along with people and dogs of all shapes and sizes. I’m quite the gentleman. When it comes to squirrels, however, all bets are off.

But soccer is my favorite pastime. Give me my favorite soccer ball, and I will insist you come out to the backyard and play with me. If you let me, I will play until I drop, so my folks have to call it quits when they think I’m tired. (Personally, I think they just get tired and won’t admit it.) I have an endearing habit of dropping the soccer ball right at their feet and just staring at it, willing them to feel guilty enough to pick it up and throw it just one more time.

During those first weeks, I met lots of new people and went to all sorts of new places. I got to go along one day to visit friends for brunch at their house. I was very well behaved. There were all sorts of people, including very little ones, who all loved me, of course. One liked to touch my ears gently and then run away screaming! I had a great time.

As time went on, I was getting more and more relaxed. I could even be by myself sometimes, although when my folks came back I would let them know pretty loudly that I was displeased. I can be a bit vocal sometimes with my barking and whining (I call it singing). I’m working on vocalizing my displeasure a bit more quietly and for a much shorter time frame. The sacrifices a pup has to make. It’s a tough life.

When my folks returned to work from vacation, I had to get used to being by myself for a little bit most days. I got introduced to my new pal, Pam, who stops by in the middle of the day when my folks are at work to walk and play with me. I really enjoy her visits! I’m even getting better at not barking too much when she comes to see me. My folks say that when I get a bit quieter, I can come to work with them sometimes. It’s tough, but it gives me something to work for. You know us shepherds. We love to work!

Over the next weeks and months, I got more and more relaxed and settled in. I still miss my pal Blossom and my foster family, but I hope to go back to visit and resume our friendly wrestling matches soon. Blossom might even come and visit me and I can show off my new digs (no pun intended…really, I don’t dig!).

Now, life is great. I love to go on my walks with my folks around town and in the woods nearby. Around town, everybody says hi to me and pets me. I get lots of attention. The guys at the gas station at the corner always have biscuits ready for me. Little kids stop to pet me and admire my beautiful coat. My tail muscles get a good workout from all that wagging.

Recently, I had two chances to see a whole bunch of my friends and well-wishers at German Shepherd Rescue. I went to the Auction where, I have to admit, I got a little full of myself showing off for the crowd. I felt a little embarrassed when I met the nice man whose car seat I chewed up when I first came to GSRNE! I was a bit anxious way back then. Trust me; I gave up that kind of thing. I think he accepted my apology. It’s amazing what a lick and a tail wag will do.

I also got to go to the annual GSRNE Picnic where I met loads more of my friends – both the human and canine variety. My folks were pretty impressed with how well I handled myself around all those dogs. I’ve come a long way. A little barking and that was that. Maybe I will be able to go into work with my folks sooner than I thought!

My pop’s a fourth-grade teacher, and I finally got to meet some of his students at the end of the school year recently. They loved me of course! I also made a very good impression on the principal so hopefully I can visit them next year as well! I’ve spent some time at my mom’s work also, and I’m getting better and better there as well. That’s good, because I love spending lots of time with my people, and they love spending it with me, naturally.

So there you have it. Life is pretty darn good now, thanks to GSRNE. When I first came to them, I was in pretty rough shape. They fixed me up, put me with an amazing foster family, and now I finally have a family and a home of my own! Hopefully, you will be able to see from the expression on my face in the pictures I’m sending along how thankful I am to everyone involved with GSRNE. I am one happy pup. Thanks! My folks say they are pretty darn happy as well and feel pretty lucky to have found me. Thanks from them as well!

See you all soon!