Love lasts forever – Susan Martin, The Dharma of Dogs…So does memories of a pet.
I knew that one day my story will be told – that’s what Bhajanlal would express very matter-of-factly, if she were here today.
You are wondering who’s Bhajanlal – she was my friend Shirsha’s long-time pawtner, a feisty Dachshund. Oh yes, Bhajanlal was a ‘she’; even though in India, ‘Bhajanlal’ is typically a male name. For many years, I didn’t even realise that Bhajanlal was a girl.
Bhajanlal’s life was full of antics. She lived as if to leave behind a treasure trove of anecdotes that her humans would later recollect fondly. In a way, Bhajanlal was like my grandfather, who passed away just a few years ago shy of a century, and his stories always make us laugh the hardest.
So, let me tell you three stories of Bhajanlal to brighten up your mood.
Story one, the guard dog
Sid and I are certain that if there was a burglary attempt at our place, Mr. Popo would prioritise his nap over fulfilling his purpose of a protector. Bhajanlal was no different. She did sleep through a failed burglary attempt, thank DOG for that 😉 at Shirsha’s house. When admonished for her performance, or the lack of it, she seemed surprised that anything beyond being pampered was in a doggo’s job description.
Story two, the loophole
As a direct fallout of the ‘guard dog’ incident, Bhajan was barred from her snugly perch with the humans and instructed to sleep in her ‘own’ bed. This was done with the expectation that she will be more alert if she is sleeping alone. Bhajan, however, was not down with this and devised a clever modus operandi to get her snuggle sleep – and her target was Shirsha. She would tip-toe into Shirsha’s room under the cover of the night and would let out a feeble whine to be allowed on the bed. After having a comfy nap with Shirsha, Bhajan would slip into her own bed in the morning before rest of the humans woke up.
Story three, size matters
Bhajan was very picky about boy doggos. Once her family played the cupid and tried introducing her to a strappy older Dachshund lad. She would not have any of it and played hard to get – refusing to come out from under the table. The unsuspecting humans found out later that Bhajanlal was, in fact, secretly dating the boy next door, Schweppes. The twist, Schweppes was a Saint Bernard …size matters! Shirsha fondly remembers, “Theirs was a cute love story; every day on his walk, Schweppes would stop by our gate to exchange pleasantries with Bhajanlal.”
From the three anecdotes recounted here to jumping out of the car, to intimidating small kids refusing to return their cricket ball if it accidentally landed in her courtyard, to secretly bonding with a new-born pack member – we could write a book about Bhajanlal’s stories (may be some day).
Doggos to me are pure emotion. They live their lives building memories…that make us cry, make us smile and many a times make us laugh out loud!
And I’m sure, from somewhere across the rainbow bridge, Bhajanlal must be looking down with that know-it-all expression: “I knew one day my story will be told!”
When I decided to chat with Shirsha about Bhajanlal , I was aware that it’s never easy to deal with the loss of a pet, even after many years. But I was pleasantly surprised at how happy she was while recounting Bhajanlal’s memories. “Losing a pet is inexplicably heart-breaking, but Bhajanlal and we had a great run. When she crossed the rainbow bridge, she made the passage in my arms surrounded by the entire family. As if by chance, everyone in the family was in Calcutta at that time to bid her farewell. Today, we always smile when we think of her. Her time with us has become bed-time stories for kids in the family.”
Want to read a similar story? Click here: Harnessed at heart forever
Bhajanlal crossed the rainbow bridge almost 15 years ago. Today, her ‘tailz’ are fondly recollected by Shirsha and her family.