With an elevated step comes a teddy-bear canine, one small enough to fit in the arms of a child. At first she is curious, then as Samantha crouches there is a chirping-bark. "Oh," she says, "are you feeling afraid, little one?" her voice as sweet as new blossom. Soon the dog comes closer to her outstretched hand and, after a few sniffs, gives a lick. "Kisses... why... thank you."