2002 Articles

Cassie Samoyed, RN

October 1989—October 8, 2002
by Karren Braddock


I almost adopted Cassie Samoyed thirteen years ago and she was the inspiration for me to adopt Roxanne this last year. Cassie was an unusual Samoyed.

Cassie came to Tiger Mountain Veterinary Clinic in 1994. She had been purchased from a pet store when she was five months old. Her papers say she came from a breeding barm in the Midwest.

Cassie had been hit by a car and had multiple real leg and chest injuries. The owners decided to have her “put to sleep” and brought her to the clinic. The owners were pursuaded to sign her over to the clinic to fix up and find her a new home. I first met Cassie as she limped around the clinic recovering from her injuries. I did not adopt her because I wanted a dog that “liked to hike.”

Cassie had many jobs as the clinic dog. She greeted clients and their pets and made them relax and feel comfortable. She was the nurse dog … choosing to lie next to dogs recovering from surgery, sometimes licking their faces or ears. She was a blood donor dog back in the days before artificial blood was used. She was ambassador dog … visiting pre-schools and elementary schools teaching young children about dogs. She was comforting dog … resting her head or paw on you when you were sad.

The job she liked best was mama dog. She never had puppies of her own, but she adopted every puppy that came through the clinic doors. She loved to lick them, clean their ears, play with them and teach them respect. My highly dominant puppy, Granger, who had no respect for man or beast, slid through the door on his back in submission to Cassie. Cassie loved C-sections since she would get to be the surrogate mom cleaning up the babies until their real mom was awake enough.

She developed diabetes. Cataracts limited her vision. Her hearing became very selective in her final months. She still came to the front of the clinic to greet her friends; but spent more and more time sleeping. Tuesday, October 8, 2002, Cassie peacefully, on her own, passed on to her new home. She was a special dog who was loved and will be missed by all her friends.