By Dr. Kuhu Roy
Some matches are made in heaven. One such was of Tweeky and Orange. While they lived on the streets of Mumbai, they were branded ferocious stray dogs because they retaliated in self-defence when provoked. Dogs will always behave with us the way we behave with them. So, the first memory I have, is of them chasing me away. They had only known the vicious side of mankind until then.
When my father took their charge, Tweeky and Orange met the first human ever who cared for them. Their fear of us humans increased manifold when their friend, White, was taken under the pretext of sterilisation and never made his way back. While the world around was hostile, the two found strength in each other and in my father, who ensured they be fed every single day come what may, he gave them both a name and an identity.
When we met for the second time, they were atleast willing to tolerate my presence and spared me a chase. In the subsequent meetings, we started building on trust that ours was a bond for a lifetime, I meant no harm to them.
It is when my father left and conditions became more hostile for their survival, they came to Baroda, and we reunited to live under the same roof. Life changed for the better not only for them, but us too. They had a roof over head, a bed to sleep on with pillows, a clean bowl of water, fresh home cooked warm meals, and most importantly, a sense of belongingness. Their personalities that were subdued until then, flowered with home-coming that gave me the opportunity to discover who they both really were.
The ferocious dogs were apparently the most docile dogs we could have ever have asked for as pets, better still, family members. Any rescued canine who came home was first welcomed by Tweeky and Orange to become a part of the family. If not for these two, homing the un-homed would never have been possible for us as a family.
They were the most peace-loving canines of the house. They together raised two rescued pups, one paralysed, Ghoplu, and the other orphan, Chhutki, becoming their adoptive parents. Orange, while raising Chutki, had the time of her life tearing pillows, bedsheets, rolling around in the mud and going on digging endeavours, that made us refer to Orange as the CEO of Orange Diggers Private Unlimited.
Tweeky, on the other hand was an indulgent adoptive father to the two. He played with them by trotting around like a horse. Orange’s bark was music to the ears, the softest ever, while Tweeky’s we never heard, until ofcourse Zenobia, an orphan pup, arrived and stole all of Tweeky’s peace in his now super senior age. Having been able to pet them was the greatest trust I have ever won.
When Orange left us, exactly two years ago on the 16th of January, 2020, we were left worried for Tweeky, because one couldn’t be imagined without the other. Then, their two adoptive children, Chutki and Ghoplu, stepped in to take care of their adoptive father, both by his side, even till date. They aren’t connected to each other by blood but their ties reflect what a true family bonded by unconditional love means.
We look back at all the challenges that came our way and together we sailed through, only to make our bond stronger. It has been a journey of love, struggles and faith that has paid the richest emotional dividends. Please do give a misunderstood dog a chance.