Sam, a Basenji* Mix breed, took one look at Hal and Kim Lovitt and knew he wanted to live in their home forever. When the couple visited the Humane Society of Memphis to find their next pet, they didn’t have a chance to select another dog. “Sampson (his original name) selected us.” said Hal.

After getting their new boy home they decided to shorten his name to Sam.

Hal is known in his neighborhood as the mayor of Sea Isle Dog Park, which he was instrumental in starting in 2018. He and Kim are instrumental in the continuous maintenance and upgrading of the park, along with many neighborhood volunteers and donors. The dog park is also generously sponsored by Hollywood Feeds! Read more about the dog park in the September 2020 issue of Jewish Scene.

“We love everything about Sam,” said Hal. And Sam loves the Dog Park as much as Hal and Kim. “Sam is a little shy and avoids other dogs, even at the park. But he loves to fetch and just wants me to throw a ball for him to bring back.”

Sam loves to travel and even takes his own bed in the car when he goes to Gulf Shores. At home he is close to Hal while they work from home these days. When he’s ready to play, he has all kinds of balls and other rubber toys. “His favorite is an orange pig named Wilber, and he loves peanut butter biscuits,” said Hal.

After a good day’s workout in the park, The Lovett Groomers are always on call when Sam needs a bath. We asked Sam who he think he looks most like in their family. He says he and Kim have the same color hair!

*Basenji is mixed with several other purebred dogs, including the Pit Bull Terrier, German Shepherd, Boxer, Siberian Husky, Jack Russell Terrier, Whippet, Border Collie, Toy Poodle, Shiba Inu, Rat Terrier, Australian Cattle Dog, Shetland Sheepdog, Shar Pei, among others.

Pet Peeve

Sam had really bad breath. But thank goodness he likes Greenies that are good for his teeth and breath. “It’s gotten a lot better!” the Lovitts exclaimed.

Special Training

Sam has never been professionally trained. “Sam is a professional,” says Hal. “He understands English and responds to commands in Yiddish as well.”

Favorite Doc

When Sam needs a checkup or isn’t feeling up to par, he sees Dr. Rodney Balthrop DVM at Eastgate Animal Clinic.