Now that I have your attention this post is about doggy puppies and has nothing to do with the #NotMyPresident movement. Sorry to disappoint and betray. You may now leave this blog and never return. Or you may read about this cute pup that I saw today. An ivory-white, helpless little thing, it was not one-month-old and trying to sniff its way around the pavement. Near it stood two mothers whose toddlers ran helter-skelter. The kids were excited beyond their wits upon sighting the pup but the mothers’ eyes held a different fascinating gaze. Almost as if they empathised. Maybe they did, I didn’t ask them. It’s a fascinating concept, the circle of life. Do you think the pup’s mother and the toddlers’ mothers would bond in a manner different to the usual man-dog way? I think they would.

Now that the monsoon season is over in these parts, litters have been popping up all over the place. In one day alone I spotted three different families – they are families even if they’re less-than-human, right? Stray dogs (for lack of a better term) are rampant in this area but they’re most gentle when interacting with humans, at least if you’re not threatening them with stones or sticks. Several dogs have well marked territories in the area around where I live, boundaries are  denoted by trees, gates and abandoned cars. The occasional new car is signatured in their signature manner sooner or later by one of the two ruling clans. The dogs are distinctly marked and it is easy to tell one from another. So when I spotted a two-month-old pup almost two months ago which didn’t belong to the area (judging by its fur) I walked up to it and was greeted by a terrible sight. The pup’s tail had been bitten off near the tail bone and it was in frail health. I sat with it for a while wondering whether dogs could be this cruel – to bite of the tail of a pup which didn’t belong to their territory. Unthinkable. The stump of the tail seemed to have healed completely and the pup didn’t seem to be in any pain which led me to believe that the wound was not recent. Indeed the pup seemed to be relaxing!

I wondered about the fate of its mother who was not to be found even several days later. The pup was getting along just fine aided by anonymous benefactors who fed it milk and food everyday. I was feeding it some biscuits on one occasion when one of the local dogs came by. Immediately the pup’s behaviour changed and it stopped eating the biscuits I had offered as if sensing its position in the social order. The bull(y) dog gobbled up the biscuits two at a time while the pup just sat around doing nothing, perhaps inwardly frightened. Over the last two months it has become something of a nomad. Living in constant fear of the pack that wants to extricate it from their territory, it has fallen to occupying a few square metres of area near the building I live in – there it sleeps and rests everyday. Every week or so it vanishes in search of who knows what and then I don’t see it for four or five days. I saw it today after a hiatus of two weeks; its longest outing. Though not frail anymore, the pup is certainly not the healthiest dog around. But it will find its way, as life does, of that I am sure.