SamHenry Stalked by African Tortoise While Shopping for Labrador Retriever

Posted on November 29, 2010

In Darien Center, New  York (near Buffalo) the late Sam Henry was born.  He has been missed. Finally, there was a drive over to the kennels called Labs Landing a couple days ago to see Beth  about one of Sam’s relatives.

Beth breeds Brown, Black and Yellow English labs. I love the “chunkier” English variety with their wonderful square heads and shorter legs.  A description of the difference between English style and American labs is found here.   While I would have wanted black, sadness about Sam still lingers.  I probably need a new color and a new start.  There was and is only one Sam Henry

So there I was deep into getting to know some pups when I looked up and there was a very large tortoise coming at me.  It was a lot like going to McDonald’s and seeing a goat walk up to the counter and order fries.  It just doesn’t happen.  There were breeding bitches and pups and grand children running around the room and so was this tortoise.  He’s 10  years old and his name is Zippy:

Zippy - front view

Beth said calmly – don’t worry, he’ll just nip your shoes.  Well, he did that and then progressed up my leg to my pant cuffs.  That was OK but the thing about Zippy is that he became enamored of me and would not leave me alone.  He stalked me for an hour as I talked with Beth and talked puppies.

Zippy also loves the “puppy herd.”

Zippy in younger years with Crystal

Like all of us in Western New York, Zippy likes to spend winters in front of the fire.  Notice he has the prime spot.

Beth at the end of a log day of puppies and grandchildren and tortoise dodging.

If you need a beautiful lab in temperament and in looks, the number to call would be Labs Landing  585-547-3767 — Tortoise not included in any sales. Tons of pictures of pups and the tortoise at

I came home with Whitney, a year old bitch who I will try.  I will keep her for Beth to breed.  Beth misses her so there may be a swap.  Meanwhile, here is Whitney in the back yard with Imp.

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