Saturday, June 25, 2011

Puppy love

Well, you know you love someone when you miss them. Or do you? I am sure I love Dad and Anant as they are my father and brother. But I don't miss them. I have started living nearer to my workplace while my family stays in Vasai, and while I am sure my dad misses me-asking me everyday if I will be home friday, what time will I reach, and if I will have dinner. I am sure my brother doesn't; we are there for each other in the time of need, but we can;t be called Ram-Lahkan by any stretch of the imagination. But that's cool. We love each other,and that's that. I have never been a real big "Misser", if you may.

 But this critter, the new pup we have brought into our life named Cocaine, I do miss. And that's really something. I had always maintained I wanted to raise a Dog before I raised a kid to see if I was caretaker material. No, I didn't believe the adage cometh the hour, cometh the man. I wanted to have hands-on experience in raising something a little less challenging than a kid.

My peeps know how absolutely petrified I am while holding children, and how tense I am when they are in one of their look here-run there displays. I don't find a lot of difference between drunkards and children, both walk the same walk, talk the same talk, will get angry at the slightest show of resent, think all the worlds a toilet, and there is seldom any use trying to talk sense into them.

My peeps also know of the countless accidents, stitches, bruises and TT's I have had to endure during early childhood, and during adulthood too, for that matter- the latter being the result of poor decision making skills. I am always afraid that something like that would happen to the kids and am extra careful-some would say, too careful- in the company of kids.

Coming back to the Lab retriever we have welcome to our life- Cocaine Dwivedi. The first week has gone by, and I'd say he has settled well into our home. He has also started settling his teeth inside anything he fancies, which is my to be sis-in laws forearms and brothers nose most of the times.

A visit to the good Doctor Dighe confirmed that he was well and truly a thoroughbred, something that my brother was very keen on, and toiled a lot for. He advised us to wait a week for him to get comfy in our home before starting off with the vaccinations as those were a not so pleasant experience for the pup. He also noted that he had a skin affliction which would go away in time,and started Cocaine off on a dose of de-worming. I noticed a few things of note that day:

  • Raising a pup is almost like raising a child.
    • It's as expensive.
    • Children-human and dogs- have their special foods. and yes, they are expensive.
    • Both need constant care and attention.  
    • Both need proper nutrition. Having done a course in nutrition, I knew that for babies. Well, one does not need to be a certified nutritionist to know that babies require good foods, but one is hit with the striking similarity of pup and child nutrition when one nurtures a pet.
    • You don't get a lot of sleep at night.
  • You begin to worry.
I now understand, or shall I say can imagine why my father, over the years, on countless occasions has said, "Son, when you become a father and raise your kid, you will  understand why I worry so much". 

The Vet told me that he had a skin problem, and that was the only thing wrong n my perfectly superb life after that. I was worried if Jyoti would feed him right, and she has a beautiful, all growed up Pom in her house by the way, on top of the fact that she is one of the most caring mammals you'd ever find. I was worried, what if someone stomps on the poor guy, if he eats dirt and gets gastro, and what if he felt scared and I wasn't around? I have always been the protective type, being a man and all, but the level of concern I have developed for Cocaine is unparallel. I had to sit my grown rear down and tell myself that he was in good hands, and that I couldn't control his life, his movements all the time. The prospect of me being the rigid dad flashed past me, and no, I don't want to be the uncool dad, I want to be the cool one.

I may worry, I may let go. I may not miss him that much. But I will never stop loving Cocaine. And someday, when I have a kid, I would love to say to him, "Son, when you become a father...."

Monday, June 20, 2011

Woof! It's a dog!

We welcomed Cocaine, a two month old healthy Labrador into our house yesterday.

Cocaine Dwivedi

Amongst the many classifications of humans, there is one related to dogs; three categories, to be precise. There are some who cannot stand the furry monsters. There are also some who are okay with them. And then, there are Dog lovers.
Off the three musketeers; Dayanand ( Ze father), Anant ( Ze brother) and Kartik ( yours truly), Dad falls into the okay with Dogs, I love all animals category, whereas his sons absolutely adore dogs.
Anant had been planning to own one for almost a decade, and with dad’s impending retirement plan, I joined in to convince dad into letting us keep a pet- a DOG! While we couldn’t quite convince him-he isn’t over the moon-we did manage to eek out an Ok outta him. That was just the push Jo and Antz needed. Oh, Jo is Jyoti, Anant’s beautiful squeeze, his fiancée and soon to be wife. How soon? Well, if you want Anant to turn pale and have a mini heart attack, ask him!

Anyhoo, armed with dad’s wary surrender to our constant pleas, the dynamic trio (Anant, Anant’s tummy and Jyoti) set off on the quest to find the most wonderful puppy in the world. Anant has lived in UK for a few years, and like all students who have spent a few years there expects the people and the infrastructure to be the same as in good ol’ London. So he started scouting for kennel clubs, where he would get the purest breeds, and get to meet fanatical dog lovers like himself. He spent spent    a small fortune in travelling to these clubs and came back disappointed.
‘In London” said Anant, “You don’t call them dogs, and you don’t BUY one! You adopt one, and if you happen to meet a dog and its owner on the street,  and want to inquire about the sex of the dog, you ask, is it a lady, or a gentleman?”
He soon learnt adopting a Dog out here in aamchi Mumbai portrayed we wanted it for free, and the people out here weren't as courteous as them Londoners. But he was determined, come hell or high water, to bring home a Dog, and after toiling for a few days, he got home Cocaine.

There must be a very few people who don't like puppies, and there are some dog haters who don't mind puppies either. This is not without reason. Children, be it piglets, fowls, human or pups, are cute. 

Coco has brought in a lot of happiness- along with a lot of cleaning that needs to be done after it pees all over the house- into our lives, and I will write a fortnightly article on how he is changing our lives. 

I remember saying to a friend that I wanted to raise a dog first and then think of marriage and kids as it requires commitment and care. Well, I think I am ready for the commitment. So all the dog loving girls out there, gimme a holler! ;)