For those who know me or know of me, this one’s a no-brainer.
Let me trace back to the early signs of my obsession. My mother has refreshed my memory on many points, of course.
I was five. My grandmother was an ardent follower of Hindi (and Tamil) soaps, out of which ‘Tara’ was one I used to enjoy watching as well. At this point, you must be wondering how on earth did a five-year-old kid comprehend a TV show about a woman protagonist and her complex relationships. Be rest assured that I was least interested in Tara’s doings. It was her pet Pomeranian that had me captivated.
My attention span was directly proportional to the number of scenes involving her dog. My fascination for this fluffy, beady-eyed breed, naturally escalated as time went by. Soon enough, not a morning went by without me having begged my parents to get me a fluffy white dog. My persistence, having reached its peak, finally yielded some results.
They got me a soft toy that resembled a Pomeranian. That’s right.
*sad background music*
In hindsight, I think they did the most sensible thing that two young parents could have done to pacify their annoying, petulant child. Once I realised that Pomi (that was the most innovative name I could think of), was mute and not real, I began accepting him for who he was. He became the love of my life. The apple of my eye.
Five years later, we visited my granduncle in Bangalore. By then, Pomi had lived a full life and I had to let him go, sadly, owing to my allergies to his fur. That’s when I was introduced to Raja, a majestic German Shepherd, whom I had only seen in photographs. Raja’s bark was ten times worse than his bite. I had presumptuously assumed that he would greet me in a composed manner. Having a huge dog welcoming me with jumps and barks was intimidating, to say the least. Nevertheless, our friendship blossomed over the next few days and I overcame my fear. When it was time to leave, I couldn’t help but feel sad.
Unfortunately, I never got a chance to meet Raja after that. Within a few years, post a long battle with arthritis, Raja departed to Rainbow Bridge. I remember staring at his pictures, with a lump in my throat.
There are no good-byes for my dog who has died,
and we don’t now and never did lie to each other.
So now he’s gone and I buried him,
and that’s all there is to it.
– Pablo Neruda
Since then, I have made several canine friends in different parts of the city and elsewhere. It’s funny how I always encounter one wherever I go, the university, at work, a local coffee-shop, and in some cases even when I’m on vacation. My locality is full of strays or Indies as I prefer to call them. I am that lucky girl who gets to learn music with a dog beside her for company. My Instagram feed overflows with puppy videos. My friends have names, each with a personality unique to him or her.
I recall a time when I hatched a plan with my friends to adopt a puppy and share him amongst us. Of course, that never materialized. Being a dog-lover in a house full of non-lovers (not haters) is not easy. It is true that owning a dog comes with its share of big responsibilities. That being said, it doesn’t stop me from fantasizing about having a house full of dogs in the future.
I can go and on because I believe these creatures deserve more love, warmth, words, and kindness than they actually receive. Before I conclude, I have a few questions for my fellow dog-lovers out there.
What is it that makes you melt when you see your canine friend?
Is it the floppy ears?
Is it her soft brown eyes that have the power to absorb all traces of anxiety and depression? Or is it his velvety muzzle that is just so…umm…cute?
It could also be the paws that leave traces of rain, mud and the excitement of having a explored something new.
D is for Dogs
My theme for the A-Z Blogging Challenge is ‘The A to Z of some my favourite things’. Stay tuned for more posts, this April!