In the safe paws of Tommy

Tommy's son, Bheema.

A few years ago, I saw a black-brown puppy standing with its tail bent like a bow towards its back. I was drawn towards the little pup and desired to adopt her. I approached her whistling gently and she responded by wagging her little tail. She slowly started following me.

I come from a family of animal lovers but I was worried to take this little girl home. My late father used to insist that we only adopt male dogs as it will become difficult to maintain a female when she becomes a mother. Nevertheless, I didn’t give up on her.

Tommy was very active and a good watchdog. She never allowed any stranger walk or enter our house.

On November 5, 2014, she gave birth to five puppies - three male and two female. We named the boys Soma and Bheema, and the girls were called Browny, Bullikhan and Blacky.

While Soma, Bullikhan and Blacky initially found a new home, Soma came back home as the new family couldn’t take care of her. So, we lived with four dogs.

In 2015, my wife Savithri was bedridden. With a heavy heart, I left Soma and Browny freely as it was difficult to balance taking care of the house and pets. 

When my wife passed away a year later, at the age of five, Tommy wasn’t eating too well. We tried giving her the things she liked but she soon became weak. Even after giving her as much as medical care as we could, she passed away in February last year. 

I will never forget the last reaction when I called out to her. She would wag her tail gently, bidding farewell; my eyes filled with tears. 

Just before her last few moments, she went to the room where Bheema stays and slept there for some time. She came out sometime later and waited for my son, Prathinoothan, to come back from college at 4 pm. 

Compared to Tommy, Bheema is an aggressive dog. He was also a good watchdog like his mother. He’s taken over her responsibility now. He even sleeps next to my pillow; he keeps his paws on the pillow until I come to bed. 

Dogs are well-known for their unconditional love. They surely teach you that and it’s a lesson for life. If you want to learn selfless service to the master, we must learn it from dogs.

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In the safe paws of Tommy

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