I Too Had a Dog

When I was 2 or 3, I don’t really remember when, we had a dog. I don’t even know his name and I don’t know his breed. What I do know is that he was black and I loved him very much. I know this because I still remember his death. He was a funny dog. Ma says, we, that is me and my brother, used to play strict teacher with him. We would get a cane and just come at him. He was always brave and maybe more mischievous than us. He would snatch the cane and throw it in the pond nearby our home. We would go crying to ma that how bad our dog was for throwing our things. Ma only laughed and he would come and sit silently wagging his tail and acting all innocent.

We loved him. He always chased us when we went out to fields to explore in the sun and brought us back. Ma had told him to keep us inside when it was hot. He was good at it.

I remember he was sick and ma says it’s because he had fallen down the stairs while chasing a monkey. He was much hurt and our uncle rushed him to the vet, who was quite far because we lived in a village. The vet stitched his injuries but said he won’t live. Uncle brought him home. He just lay down by our bedroom door and refused to eat or drink. I remember this clearly. He was sad. We were sad. My grandma tried to cheer him up but he wouldn’t listen to her. Perhaps with the fall, his appetite had fallen too. He did not eat or drink for two days. In the evening he started whimpering and everyone knew he was going. Everyone but me.

I was not there then. I don’t know where I was, I just was not there with him in his last minutes. Somehow I think it was for the best. Uncle made him drink some water from Ganges River and put some basil in his mouth, a Hindu custom for a departing soul. He left this world, while people who loved him sat by him weeping. He left a people broken-hearted. And those people decide not to have a pet anymore. It just hurt so much.

Their poor baby, he was sweetheart to everyone when he lived and after death he was so missed. He made everyone laugh. Grandma has told us many tales of his. He would guard her door while she worshipped and let no one enter to disturb her prayers. Later I took the post with him and continued his legacy till we moved to a different city.

I don’t remember a lot of things, but I remember his death. I don’t think I can go through all that again, so maybe I won’t have a pet. One of my friends just lost her dog and she is so heartbroken. It just reminded me what we had gone through. I am left thinking when someone we love dies, some part of us die with them. A part that will never again be born like all souls, it will never reincarnate. With so much love, how many parts of our souls have died?


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