“Oh my God!!”
“What!? What happened??”
“Come out and look for yourself!” my dad exclaimed.
We rushed out and there was Chinnu in our car porch, looking at us with big brown eyes. And next to her were two puppies!!
“Oh no! What are we gonna do now??” my mom asked.
“There’s nothing we can do. It’s official now. We have a dog” my dad said. “And her puppies” he added.
Me and my brother secretly exchanged glances. Yay!! Finally we were having pets at home after a long time. Our family has always been open to pets. We have had dogs as well as cats before. But since we moved to our new home there were none. And then a couple of stray dogs started visiting. Well, they loved to play in the mound of sand in our neighbour’s site (their house was under construction). Since we liked dogs we started feeding them, and in turn they began guarding our house in our absence. We named them Chinnu and Munnu. My dad warned us, “Don’t get too attached. They are still stray dogs”. But we were just happy to have them around.
A few months later Chinnu got pregnant. And my dad had had enough.
“That’s it! Don’t let her come inside the gate anymore. If she lays puppies here it will be our responsibility. People are already complaining about the dogs even though they’re not ours. We never should have fed them in the first place” he grumbled. My brother and I were used to this. We knew that deep down he did not mean it. He liked dogs too and none of us had the heart to send Chinnu away in that condition. I mean, where else could she go? But turns out Chinnu had made the decision herself. And there she was looking at us as if to say, “I hope you don’t mind, I thought my kids would be safe here!”
By the end of the day there were six puppies, one male and five female. Although we are big-hearted people it was not practical to have six puppies at home. We gave five of them to an institute called Prem Chaya, where they take care of stray animals. We kept one and decided to call her Fatsy. She was cute and plump (hence the name) and soon became a part of our family like no other pet before.
When she was still a year old!
Throughout her childhood (or is it puppyhood?) she loved to bite stuff! Be it my mom’s sandals, my socks, my dad’s raincoat, my brother’s shoes, or the doormat. Nothing was spared. Playing in the garden was her favourite pastime. As she grew, car rides became her next favourite thing. We even take her to the beach once in a while. I don’t know if it’s the water or the sand or the fact that there’s so much open space. She just enjoys it!
At the beach
Sometimes we just sit and talk to her, I mean literally “talk” (people with pets will understand) and watching her listen as if she understands every word we say just makes our day. Over the years we have seen her grow with us. Celebrating her birthdays, our birthdays, anniversaries, every occasion was made special because of her presence. She was there when we welcomed a new member to our family. I’m referring to my brother’s marriage of course! I like to think that Fatsy approved of Krithi (my sister-in-law) even before my parents did.
She loves running up and down these stairs
Oh yeah! She is the boss. Period.
It’s been ten years since Fatsy came into our lives. That’s right! She’s turning 10 on 23rd of September. And I cannot help but smile when I recollect all the good old days with her. Ever since I’ve moved to Pune, my brother and his wife to Bengaluru, Fatsy has been missing us a lot. Whenever I Skype with my parents I talk to her too. She looks at the screen for a good 15-20 seconds and wags her tail. It’s the best feeling I tell you! Every time I call my dad, my conversation never ends unless I ask, “So how are Fatsy and Chinnu?” And he always replies, “They’re awesome as always. Fatsy misses you all though”.
The most recent pic I have of hers. This was taken last Diwali
So this time for her birthday, I decided to write about her, for she has been such a major part of our lives. I think that having a pet makes you happier, it becomes easier to deal with every day stuff and coming home to wagging tails at the end of the day just brings a smile on your face, no matter how famished you are. I know that Fatsy will not be able to read this. But I just have to say. Happy birthday babygirl!! You impacted our lives in the best way possible and trust me, we are truly glad that ten years ago Chinnu chose our home to be your home!