Amaan Ali Khan

A young talent of the 7th generation in an unbroken chain of the Senia Bangash School, Amaan Ali Khan is the elder son and disciple of sarod maestro Amjad Ali Khan and grandson of Haafiz Ali Khan. Initiated into the fine art of sarod playing at a very tender age, Amaan began his public performances as early as eight. He has been performing concerts worldwide ever since and has won the hearts of music lovers both in India and around the globe. Here’s something more about this talented youth – his pooch love!

Accompanying his father to various music festivals in India and abroad, Amaan Ali Khan has today carved out a niche for himself. His performances have evoked creditable applause. His precision in tunefulness and his bold and resonant strokes are all pointers to importance of tradition and continuity in Indian classical music.

Awards and accolades came his way early in life yet Amaan steadfastly pursued his family’s inheritance and legacy. He was conferred with the Provogue Society’s Young Achievers Award for performing Arts in 2002. He has also co-authored a book with his brother Ayaan titled Abba…God’s Greatest Gift to Us on his father’s life.

The cherished pooches…

Besides music, Amaan loves pooches and just few years back, he had two very cute pet dogs – a Golden Labrador (Dash) and an Alsatian (Brutus), who as Amaan describes, were really naughty and adorable. Amaan shared a very special relationship with his pets. But Amaan regrets not having spent enough time with Brutus as the pet passed away when Amaan was just a child, Amaan has strong memories of Dash.

The ‘Dash’ing pooch…

Dash came home as a three-month-old pup when Amaan was in high school. “He was a small bundle of joy. My little cousin named him ‘Dash’ and everyone obliged the five years olds’ request,” he laughs. As a pup ‘Dash’ was very quiet and meek, but as he grew up Amaan says, “He became quite a prankster.” Since Dash’s training started at a very young age, he grew into an obedient dog.

The heartwarming anecdote…

“Once I had fever and was in bed. I went to my living room and sat on the sofa and slouched against the back, just then Dash came to me and sat next to me… Dash sensed my illness. He came to my side to protect me. Dash was not content to just lie beside me but insisted on having one paw across my legs and his head on my lap. I felt a special bond with Dash from that day onward. Dash didn’t cure or save my life, but he wanted to. He tried,” shares Amaan.

The family bonding…

Dash loved the whole Khan family. He was their mountain, wrestling partner, mischief maker and also their protector. “Large dogs often do not live as long as small dogs. We knew that the day would come when we would have to say goodbye to Dash. The inevitable became more real when he lost his hearing. Sometimes he wandered off and into the lawns and forgot his way home. One day I noticed a small lump on his leg which turned out to be fatal. Finally we had to say goodbye to Dash, but I cherish every moment spent with him and dogs truly are a man’s best friend!” tells Amaan.

Towards pet parenting…

“Basic puppy training is a must if you want your puppy to grow up to be well-mannered, obedient dog and a pleasure to have around. And the first few weeks with your new puppy sets the tone for your whole relationship, so it’s important to get off on the right foot…or paw! The tiny puppy will be an adolescent before you know it, and from there it’s just a hop, skip and a jump to full blown adulthood. Those bad habits that seem cute now will be a whole lot more when your pet becomes a full grown dog,” shares Amaan.

On pooch love…

“Some people are cat lovers, some are dog lovers. But regardless of which camp they fall into, most people are simply crazy about their pets. The connections people form with their dogs are often the longest, strongest relationships in their lives. They are our soul mates, our best friends, sometimes even our surrogate children,” concludes Amaan.

Kainaz Motivala

Kainaz MotivalaKainaz Motivala has been seen in popular Bollywood movies like Ragini MMS, Wake Up Sid and Paathshaala. Here is the animal welfare sentiment of this aspiring actress…

Kainaz Motivala, a model, aspired to become a journalist but eventually switched to acting. Besides, she is a published writer, and above all, an animal lover too! Woof! Surely a multifaceted personality.

Pooch love…

Kainaz is not just an avid animal lover, she has been passionately serving the furry angels too. She has adopted around 100 dogs from her locality, who she feeds and also takes good care of these pariahs’ health, vaccination and hygiene. And she loves doing all this. “I think I have been in love with these animals, especially dogs, ever since I was a kid. My mom is also an animal lover and I think she passed that down to me. I grew up in a small town, where people had lots of animals: dogs, goats and chickens and I always found that very interesting,” she said.

Though she has a great compassion for animals, surprisingly, she doesn’t have one at home…but she really wants to have one…. “I want to do work that I believe in and it is my plan to get myself a little puppy on my birthday,” she told. It would indeed be a sight to see her as a proud pet parent!

What inspires her…

Her unconditional love for pariahs is so strong that helps her to weather all odds. “There are people who don’t like animals and don’t understand basic animal behaviour. They disapprove of the things we do to help these animals in need. I’ve got into problems with some people because of this, but it doesn’t deter me at all,” added Kainaz.

She feels highly motivated by the fact that animals give ten times the amount of love we give them. This feeling has provided a spark to her compassion for animal welfare and she started her own initiative to help street animals, and she shared, “I haven’t done half as much as I’d like to, but I do try to help out in my own little way. I’ve volunteered at WSD (The Welfare of Stray Dogs) and I try to raise awareness about the work animal welfare NGOs do. I along with other residents of my complex take care of stray dogs in our society by feeding, bathing and getting them medical attention when required.”

The unconditional love…

Being a celebrity, how does she manage to steal time to follow her passion for animal welfare? “It doesn’t take too much time to show your affection towards an animal. Even a pat on the back earns you a lot of brownie points in doggie world. And being with them also acts as a stress buster for me. We lways find time for things that make us happy and being with dogs is that thing for me,” she replied. “They ooze so much love and can always uplift my mood. And I love their energy, sensitivity and playfulness. They just love me unconditionally, no matter what,” she added.

Games she plays with pooches…

“I love to play ‘Catch’ with them and they love my company as well. Together we have a lot of fun,” she told. On a lighter note, she added, “My friend’s Lab is probably the laziest dog in the world, but when you sing ‘Happy Birthday’ he’s by your side in a flash because in his mind, there’s a direct association between the song and cake. And I just burst into spells of laughter…every time we sing Happy Birthday.”

Tips for readers…

“I would just like to appeal to people to show more love and empathy towards animals. There are so many animals in need of help all the time. If you can’t provide a home to them, at least try to feed them or provide them with medical attention when required and you will have a true friend for life,” she concluded.

Hard Kaur

Hard KaurThe female hip hop queen Hard Kaur rose to stardom in Bollywood with her hit number Paisa Phek (Move Your Body) of Johnny Gaddaar and other hits in the movies like Singh is King, Kismat Konnection, etc. Since then, she has proven her talent again and again. Little do people know that this beauty with talent is also smitten with pooch love. Here, she reveals her love for pets.

From Birmingham to Bombay, Hard Kaur has had a rewarding journey. Born in India as Taran Kaur Dhillon, her musical journey began at her birth place India but it was her arrival in Birmingham in 1991 that opened a new door to another world where her dreams actually became a reality. She moved to the UK with her mother and younger brother. Having no English language skills in her vocabulary, she immersed herself in a different type of universal language that she instantly connected with ‘music’ and went on to meet her first love…Hip Hop. And the rest, as they say, is a history.

Life with pets…

Besides music, this talented singer is also immersed in pooch love. Her companionship with pets dates back to her childhood.

“I remember my dad used to pick up dogs from the street and kept them in the house and even he used to get in trouble for this,” she giggled. Nevertheless, pets were always an eminent part of her life. “I’ve had one rabbit named Casper, you know, like the ghost in the animated movie of the same name because he was so white. But the first love of my life was my Pit Bull Terrier named Cyrus da virus,” she added.

“Cyrus was nice to everyone and he was like a family member. He had his own sofa to watch TV and he would wait for me outside my room until I woke up. Cyrus was loved by the whole community in my hometown in Birmingham. I’ll never forget when a thug tried to rob my mum as she was coming back home from work and he broke through the window and saved her. She was so thankful to him that she was in tears. Dogs truly are human’s best friends,” she added.

Sharing life with Bobo…

Today, Hard Kaur shares her life with Bobo, who’s her new Pit Bull. “I flew him in from Punjab and he’s so loving,” she added. “We play and chase each other and I give him bubble baths which he loves. Also he knows that every time I come from a trip abroad, I bring him lots and lots of bones and toys. What I love about him the most is that he loves me so much. He’s very caring and my bodyguard…I think he considers me as his mummy,” shared Kaur.

“He adores his massages. But it is actually my boyfriend who really takes good care of him and never leaves him alone for too long. He even takes care of his exercise like long walks and climbing the stairs,” she told. “We don’t even go on vacations if they don’t let him fly. I’m planning a trip to Goa by car so he too can play on the beach with me.”

For some moments of fun …

All time favourite activities of Hard Kaur and Bobo are the moments they spent together playing ‘fetch’. Talking about sharing, Hard Kaur mentions that Bobo loves to sleep in her bed, instead of choosing the huge and comfortable one set for him. He is very handsome, loving and full of crazy and funny antics! “The moment he finishes eating or after he’s done poo, Bobo jumps around the room proud of his achievement,” grinned Kaur. Telling about the things Bobo likes, Kaur told, “We give lots of protein to Bobo and he loves to eat carrots too. He loves cheese although we don’t give him that too often. He also loves Marie biscuits and peanut butter as well.” “When it comes to toys, he loves to play with his Kong playball rubber toy, although it only takes him an hour maximum to finish and destroy it,” she laughed.

Tips for the readers…

“Whenever you take your dog for a walk, you must wash his paws and tail with dog shampoo to prevent him from getting fleas, ticks and mites while walking. Never give chocolate to dogs as it is like poison to them. Also, do not feed milk as most dogs are lactose intolerant. Love them and you are sure to be loved back – thousands time more,” concluded the responsible pet parent Hard Kaur.

Raageshwari

RaageshwariSeeing all that things she has done so far, one cannot deny the fact that versatility has always been Raageshwari’s forte. She is an actor, a VJ and a terrific singer. It takes just one meeting with her to instantly connect the chirpy fun-filled onscreen girl to the real Raageshwari who giggles and laughs endlessly as she narrates episodes of her life spent with some beautiful pets in the past and current best buddy Mr Harpo Raageshwari Loomba.

Raageshwari as a kid would pick up stray pups and kittens; and to her surprise, her parents would readily welcome each of them. “My first pet was a brown and black kitty named Poncho,” she recalls. After Poncho, she had another cat called Nonie and then a parrot named Gangaram. And her experience with canines was marked with the entry of a Pomeranian couple named Fiddle and Leutty. Fiddle was a rowdy brat while Leutty was like the well-behaved queen, very composed and polished.

Total recalls…

Raageshwari has beautiful memories of these lovely pooches running all around the house bringing back a fun atmosphere at the Loomba Residence. Leutty, being the obedient one, never required a leash or any kind of supervision while Fiddle who was always taken down with a big harness would hate to see Leutty galloping around on her own. “Fiddle would chase all kinds of moving objects and eventually land up in mucky puddles to amuse everyone around. Sadly, Fiddle passed away at an early age,” she added.

Leutty, who went on to become Raageshwari’s favourite lady, lived for a good span of 18 years but with her demise came a terrible patch of grief and sorrow. Recalling those awful days, Raageshwari says, “My family and I did not eat for weeks when she passed away. We had swollen faces for days and we just couldn’t control our tears. Like most dog lovers who lose their pets we also swore never to get another pet. It’s simply unfair that their life span does not match ours.”

The little clown of the family…

After Leutty’s death there was a sudden void in Raageshwari’s life and she started craving for a pet companion again… this time wanting to have a Jack Russell Terrier who was almost on his way from Delhi but as she puts it, the Cosmic Powers were striking a connection some place else. The very same day, she was informed of a litter in her garden but the sad bit was that the mother was run over by a car soon after delivering the pups. One look at the stray pups and Raageshwari had made up her mind to adopt one of them and that’s how Mr Harpo Raageshwari Loomba arrived home. Today, she feels great about the fact that she got home a pariah pup who was in need of a family. Raageshwari in a super excited mood tells us more about this little clown of the family…

Adorable thing about Harpo…

“My ‘Harpo’ is a twin soul in many ways. He bullies me and never listens to me but my family tells me that he gets miserable when I travel. He looks at my towel and clothes and sings in a morose tune. He keeps lying down only in my room. The moment I get home he meets me like fifty children in a circus. He is all over me – singing, whistling and then follows me into my room and sits on the bed and endlessly stares at me,” she told happily.

Leisure time together…

“Harpo loves to go for long walks and drives. He has a toy called ‘Gudda’ which is the ugliest looking toy ever but Harpo loves it like crazy. We perpetually end up playing the ‘Fetch Game’ that he loves to play with ‘Gudda’ but we got to play it his way wherein… we throw the toy and then fetch it ourselves, while he hides! Then we have to find him and lure him into grabbing the toy… then he growls and we have to beg for him to give it back while he rolls his eyes! It’s a game for the daft family and we sort of qualify completely!” she laughed.

Harpo’s idea of being loved…

“I think he loves the fact that I always listen to him. In fact, at times it feels like he owns me and he is my master! Harpo is a spoilt brat, so if he is lazy I let him sleep; if he wants something to eat, he gets it only from me. Even if I am working on my comp, he will get his toy begging everyone to play with him, only I will stop everything and play with him. So, I guess he hopefully likes the fact that I am always there for him,” told Raageshwari.

Holidaying on hills…

“Harpo is very high maintenance so we can never leave him without a family member. I have never holidayed without him and as a pet parent it’s an obvious sacrifice you got to make. We simply cannot take off on a holiday where Harpo cannot accompany us. I would hate to fly him since cargo accommodations in planes are really stressful. So, we most of the time end up out trips to nearby places. We always go to the hills and resorts located close by where we can drive together and Harpo loves every bit of his leisure trip,” told Raageshwari as a responsible pet parent.

Special dog’s special antics…

“I have met and interacted with many dogs but Harpo seriously is a rare one. The way he greets us when the family gets home is indescribable and astonishing. We simply stand still as we get worried someone will get hurt. He jumps all over the house, gallops like a horse, licks us unremittingly and this goes on for half an hour until we faint. I love the fact that he expresses so much love and saves it only for his dearest family,” she chuckled.

Harpo’s exercise regime…

Harpo makes his pet parents exercise! “We have to run behind him while he gallops, hold him to save mortal guests who arrive; we have lost oodles of weight since he’s been with us. And it’s his super active behaviour that keeps him good in shape and health,” she laughed.

Harpo’s wholesome meals…

“Harpo is a glutton… apart from his assorted meals of fish, chicken and mutton everyday, he craves for more always! He is a total foodie and we invariably end up pampering his taste buds,” she told.

Tips on responsible pet parenting…

“Sorry he is my son, but I can honestly say, that he is the most spoilt, ill-mannered, ill-trained, neurotic, passionate dog… he is a mean machine for any seventh person other than his family of six (that is us)… so, while he is an adorable baby for us, with others he is simply Hell-On-Wheels.

I should not and cannot share any tips as people after reading this wouldn’t obviously want to end up with training their pooches to become a monster like Harpo,” smilingly concluded Raageshwari.

But an adorable monster indeed! Harpo occupies a very special place in Raageshwari’s life and we hope that our pretty angel someday succeeds in taming this little devil called Harpo.

Isha Koppikar

Isha KoppikarBe it bold ‘Khallas’ girl, petite Rajjo of Pinjar or smart Anita of ‘Don – The Chase Begins Again’… we loved Isha Koppikar in all her cameo roles. We saw her act…we love her dance…we like her style…what next. Yep! It’s her great compassion for our furry four-legged friends. Now let’s focus on her dog love only… so all tails up for Isha – a proud pet parent…woof!

Isha Koppikar is an Indian actress and model who has appeared in Kannada, Telugu, Tamil and Hindi films. She shot to fame with her item number – Khallas in Ram Gopal Verma’s Company in 2002. Here’s the softer side of this glam ‘n’ gorgeous gal as a poochie pal.

Me ‘n’ Mowgli

Her father introduced her to pets and now she has her own bundle of joy, Mowgli – a GSD. She loves all dogs, but has a soft corner for Dalmatians, so why just one… “I want to give best of my love and care to Mowgli…so I really don’t want many but just one and special – Mowgli. Every moment I spend with him is really cherishing. The way he goes mad and dance is really wonderful.”

Doggie’s day out

Isha loves to pamper her pet and likes to go on long drives with him. “Mowgli and I often go on road trips to Pune, Lonavala, etc. All our drives are memorable to me. Once in the car, he is impatient but soon settles with a ball.”

“He scared me once by running on the road – but since then I am extra careful and take every precaution while taking him out,” she narrates.

I’m always there!

“I love to train him. Actually I am the trainer. I like to spend time with him and sometimes when he is disobedient, my father tells me that I am responsible for that,” she narrates.

She further adds, “My whole family is very conscious about fitness…of Mowgli too… He loves his walk with my father in Shivaji Park.”

The bond…

Isha and Mowgli share wonderful compatibility. “It’s the unconditional love, the behaviour…which has strengthened our bond, it is really great. Mowgli is the most pampered member of our family,” she adds.

Delicacies he loves to gorge on…

Fun ‘n’ food time is so amazing for Mowgli, “He loves to gorge on rice with keema. He also loves eating raw fruits, especially Papaya…it’s his favourite. Not to forget …ice creams! He wants it all.”

On being a responsible pet parent!

“Be responsible to your pet. If your family atmosphere is peaceful, then your pet will also behave in the same manner. If we are aggressive, impatient, they will adopt the same behaviour. It’s very important to shower proper love on them. Proper grooming should be done – paw care, trimming, cleaning ears, etc. And don’t forget the important vaccinations,” concludes Isha.

Divya Seth

Divya SethPooch love seems to be in the genes. Meet actress Divya Seth who not only shares her profession with her mother Sushma Seth but also her love for pooches.

The quiet appearance of Divya Seth in Shahid-Kareena flick Jab We Met as Shahid’s mother made the character truly unforgettable. Better known as the ‘Majhli’ of yesteryears’ first soap opera on Indian television Hum Log, Divya also has many other memorable performances to her caredit, which include popular shows like Daraar, Adhikaar, Abhimaan and Sarkaar. Besides acting, Divya adores pooches…not just pets but all furry angels. Here she shares her deeply imbibed doggy love. Excerpts – On entering Divya’s maternal house in Delhi, where she was with her kid on a short trip, I was greeted by her mother, the versatile actress Sushma Seth, daughter Mihika and the lady herself having a great time with their pets, namely, Pebble – American Cocker Spaniel, and Pepper – English Cocker Spaniel. “Without a doggy…our lives are incomplete and everyday is a special day with them,” shared Divya.

A born pet lover…

As a 10-year-old, Divya always used to pester her mom to adopt a pet…a cat…a rat…a parrot…anything. And one Christmas eve, her dream came true in form of Tippy – a Lhasa Terrier. “Tippy was my best buddy. The day I set my eyes on her, I threw all my toys and dolls out,” Divya remembered fondly. Divya loves all her doggies but still her personal favourite remains Tippy, as she added, “Tippy was mine, her loyalties lay with me and her love was so unconditional.” A glint in her eyes and a shiny smile on her lips was testimony of her immense love as she shares Tippy’s anecdote, “Once during childhood, I and my brother were fighting, Tippy pounced on my brother as she thought I was in need!” Sharing more on Tippy, Divya disclosed, “There was a cat who regularly used to visit our terrace and finish Tippy’s entire milk, Tippy tried to shoo the cat but got scared of her” laughingly added Divya. Divya was 24 years old when Tippy died. “I have all my wonderful childhood memories with her,” she exclaimed. After Tippy, she adopted many pets including a couple of cats and two dogs. Today, she has two doggies in Delhi and three in Pune.

The togetherness…

While I was talking to Divya, Pebble and Pepper kept sniffing and wagging…waiting for their turn to come. Just one call and they both ran towards her…licking and rolling with joy. Bow! That was lovely. She added more about her doggie duo as Pebble made herself comfortable in her lap. “She is so cool and calm…all the time. She is my sweetheart.” Pebble is a big-time veggie as she loves to gorge on variety of vegetables. On asking more about Pebble’s fun antics, Divya burst into laughter and added, “Whenever vegetables or other grocery items are brought home…Pebble simply sniffs for peas, her favourite, and picks out the packet to treat herself. Even when anyone peels off peas in front of her, she jumps here and there to have her share. It’s great to watch.” This winter, Pebble developed fetish for Turnip…she has had enough of it.” While Divya was narrating this antic…Sushma had another interesting tale to share, “Pebble surely has a hungry bone. Whenever food is given to Pebble and Pepper, she quickly eats up from her share and moves to Pepper’s bowl. Moreover, the way she eats is too hilarious, as she puts her hind limbs over Pepper’s bowl to guard it too. She is a big-time foodie.”

The Gen-Y experience…

Like mom and grandmom, Mihika, also shares a special bond with furry angels. “We have three lovely pooch companions – Spike (Pug), Nitro and Diesel (Weimaraners) in Pune.” Rating her favourite among them, she said: “Spike is my favourite as he loves and adores me…and I love him too,” she added. Elaborating more on Mihika and Spike’s relationship, Divya said, “Spike is crazy about Mihika, when he doesn’t find her around, he goes nuts.” His love for Mihika is such that he accompanies Mihika for swimming too. He just sits on poolside admiring her splashing in water. But the moment she goes under water…he starts jumping around. Nothing but only the sight of Mihika can calm him down.

A life-long commitment…

All in all, Divya and her family’s love towards the furry angels is truly unconditional. “Take care of your pet, as you would care for your child…with love and heartfelt passion. They are not trophies or showpieces. Many people enjoy the pup stage and then abandon their pet… that’s terrible. Make sure you are ready for a life-long commitment,” is her message to pet lovers and would be pet parents.

Kashmira Shah and Krushna Abhishek

Kashmira Shah and Krushna AbhishekKashmira Shah and Krushna Abhishek have danced their ways into millions hearts through reality shows. Read more about their canine chemistry.

Kashmira Shah, an actress, dancer and a model, is the granddaughter of famous Hindustani classical singer, Anjanibai Lolekar. A few of her films include Yes Boss, Pyar to Hona Hi Tha, Jungle, Murder, etc. On TV, she has appeared in Big Boss, Nach Baliye 3, etc. Kashmira is a born pet lover. Here’s more on her pet love…

Born instinct…

Kashmira Shah’s love for animals started when she was just three and a half years old. She brought home a kitty. “I still remember tiny sweet feline…my first pet, I called her Manya,” she fondly recalls.

The current family…

Currently, she has a Fantastic Four at home two Persian cats – Mercedes and Chanel; American Eskimo – BOO and a rescued dog (new entrant to the family, just a few months ago) – Bhatku. To start with, she shares a thought, “animals give unconditional love to everyone and anyone. They are really Gods.”

BOO is an American dog, his parents were show dogs in America…he’s been spreading cheer in Kash’s life for past nine years.

Krushna adds, “Before Kash came into my life, I was not at all a dog lover. It was just after experiencing this wonderful bond between Kash and BOO, I couldn’t stop myself falling for him. Today, I am proud of being a pet lover and sharing my life with them.”

Krushna, Kash and their precious paws together make one Purrfectly Pawfect family. They make most of everyday.

What Kashmira loves about BOO…

My love for them is immense; I can never imagine my life without them. And BOO is the best dog anyone can ever ask for. Interestingly, BOO’s wonderful persona is the outcome of his camaraderie with Zoey (another pet dog, who died) and Kash still recalls him lovingly. “Whenever I see BOO performing all the sweet antics, it reminds me of Zoey. And I thank BOO for keeping Zoey alive…it’s really out-of-the-world feeling.”

Sing ‘n’ Swing…

“Every morning my dog wakes me up with a song and he sings so well that he’s a singing star now. And in our lives when we are depressed…his one song brings all the lost happiness back in our lives and we enjoy together.”

It’s OK Mom!…

And she adds, “Whenever I am angry, BOO will leave no stone unturned to calm me down. Once my help didn’t turn up and I was extremely angry. Boo and kitties with their persuasive powers won over my anger.

The way to a pet’s heart is through his stomach…

These kids are well-cared and nurtured, as Kash adds, “We never leave our pets alone. One family member is always there to look after them.” All their daily needs are keenly supervised by Kash herself. Moreover, she’s a wonderful cook and her pets just love to gorge on Mamma’s recipes.

Unconditional love for all dogs…

She equally loves a stray…a pariah or a pedigree dog. On asking about her view on animal welfare, Kash explains that she is actively engaged in animal welfare.

Be nice to dogs…

On a concluding note, Kash appeals to all humans to ‘be human’ to man’s best friend, and adds, “I am heartbroken when I see an abandoned animal. What adds to my apathy is people’s indifferent attitude towards these mute creatures. So ‘Be Human’ and never leave any animal alone in suffering, it won’t take much time…it really heals.

In short, my message is just ‘Be nice to dogs.”

Purab Kohli

Purab KohliWith a rocking performance in Bollywood’s blockbuster ‘Rock On’, Purab Kohli swooned a billion hearts. And readers cannot forget a twenty years old Purab as a VJ who would crack us up with his funny acts. Today, he has not only transformed into a versatile performer, but also grown on the personal front with now being a caring father to ummm… two cute little pooches Tony and Bella. Here’s more on his love for the pooches.

The only couch in Purab’s living room perpetually has these Basset Hound twins sitting on either side leaving just the ideal space a guest needs, to be enveloped by some doggy love pouring in from both ends. “It’s a usual sight” says Purab who explains how Tony and Bella occupy the two corners of the couch, making it look like a furry bracket that one is supposed to ‘mechanically’ fit into. With such an amusing beginning, Purab starts sharing some funnier tales of the little ones and here is what he has to say…

Getting the twins home…

Tony and Bella were just a few weeks old when Purab’s wife noticed them in the neighbouring building. It was a family of four, the parents and these two little pups but they looked like they needed help. “They were all in such bad shape with ticks all over and when we spoke to their owner, he justified his negligence by saying that he didn’t have money to take care of these dogs. We couldn’t bear to see the dogs suffer and so we offered to adopt the entire family,” tells Purab.

“Unfortunately, the mother dog was extremely unwell and couldn’t survive but the father dog found a loving home for himself in Dehradun, leaving behind the two naughty pups with us, who have now grown up to be our Tony and Bella,” he adds.

As different as chalk and cheese…

Tony and Bella

“Tony and Bella are poles apart. Tony is a typical chilled-out boy while Bella is the one who you need to be cautious of. Tony is a Labrador in a Basset Hound disguise while Bella is like a shrewd cat. Tony is much easier going while Bella has her own quirks. There are times when Bella wants to be left alone and you can’t dare to disturb her then. Tony on the other hand is this lazy lap dog who wants to sit next to you all day and get cuddled,” adds Purab.

Healthwise, Bella is gifted with an enviable immunity and unlike other dogs she rarely falls ill. While Tony frequents the vet’s clinic for a perpetual upset tummy which according to Purab is thanks to all the cardboard that he invariably munches on. “My wife is into making handicrafts so we always have these stationeries lying all around which Tony loves to rob. As a pup, he would love chewing cardboards which he now feels should be his regular snack. No matter where you hide it, it takes only a couple of sniffs for Tony to find it,” he laughs.

The good and the bad about the two…

According to Purab, Tony and Bella have the most expressive eyes in the world. “One look at them and you know exactly what they want to say to you.” One has to watch Tony sing as Purab gets started with his harmonica. With a typical hound howl, Tony matches the notes with that of Purab’s and Bravo!! …we have a musician and his canine companion performing together for us.

But one thing that annoys Purab is that his lazy pooches hate going out for their daily walk. “There are times when people think that I am traumatising the dogs because of the looks they give while being taken out for a walk. They completely hate it. It’s like you put their leashes on and they refuse to get up and if you do manage to get them out of the couch, they refuse to move their limbs… or to make things worse, at times, they get super charged up and then drag you all along,” he shares. After having tried and given up, Purab has now hired a dog walker for the two who religiously walks them.

Family bonding…

The family hierarchy is pretty much sorted here… Tony and Bella look up to Purab as their pack leader. While they fool around with his wife Yamini all day long, with Purab they are the ultimate obedient kids. Talking about emotional bonding, Purab says, “One thing I have noticed is that when they fall ill they need me around. Especially when Tony is unwell, his body language changes completely. He will tend to sit very close to me… almost like he is drawing some healing power from me.” Purab’s wife Yamini is very particular about grooming the two babies.

Purab and Yamini also have a beach house in Alibaug which undoubtedly is the most happening holiday destination for the little pooches. “They go completely crazy in Alibaug. They love running on the beach and looking at them gallop like horses, it’s hard to believe that they are the same dogs who laze around all day back home,” laughs Purab.

Some laughter spills…

On being asked to narrate one funny incident, Purab tells, “For some strange reason, Tony and Bella love the garbage bin. Tony, we can understand, has a fetish for cardboards, but given an opportunity, they can go completely crazy just as they did the other day. Yamini and I had just got back home from dinner and we found our living room in the most horrific condition ever. The garbage bin was fully toppled on the floor with Tony and Bella tossing the trash all over the house. From vegetable peels to other worthless junk … our living room had it all. But what was really funny was the immediate apologetic look that Tony and Bella had on their faces. They knew they had done something terribly wrong!”

Purab continues to talk about Bella who stuns everyone with her peculiar traits. Apparently she is a complete summer baby and so in the midst of a scorching afternoon, you will find her sitting right in the centre of their mini terrace like a typical babe sunbathing in style. Now that’s what we call “very ladylike!”

Taking care of their meals…

Due to Tony’s sensitive stomach, Purab doesn’t like to experiment much with the diet. Tony and Bella have dog food through the week and on weekends however they get a serving of homemade food which comprises of meat and vegetables. Bella loves fish while Tony prefers chicken. Actually if given a choice, Tony would choose carrots over chicken as he loves carrots like crazy. No wonder he is also called ‘Mr Karamchand’ (a detective on famous TV serial who loved carrots).

Parenting a pet in the true sense…

Having raised the twins successfully, Purab is now confident of his parenting skills. However, he does warn pet parents of a few things. “The most important thing for a pet parent is to thoroughly understand his pet. Every animal is distinct in his own way. One needs to understand his pet’s likes and dislikes and also have a good gauge of the pet’s temperament and tolerance level. For people who are keen on getting a pet home, I would advise them to have a word with a vet about which breed would be ideal for them and their households, as each breed has distinct characteristics that the family needs to adapt to. As a pet parent, I repeatedly harp on the fact that it’s you who has to adjust to what your pet demands rather than expecting the little one to dance to your tunes.” A profound insight for our readers indeed!

Pooja Bedi

Pooja BediTall and graceful, Pooja Bedi inherits her genes from the legendary actor Kabir Bedi and renowned Odissi dancer Protima Bedi. “I have pets since 1982. My first pet was Bobo, a Lhasa Apso and I learnt a new meaning of man-canine relation with her. We all… me, my brother and Bobo… had a lot of fun …in fact we all grew up together,” tells Pooja.

The memory stock

Pooja has all her fond childhood memories to share as she adds, “Bobo had a very peculiar personality. At that time we were in a boarding school, so she developed a phobia of people leaving home and going away. She extremely loved and welcomed everybody who entered our home. But nobody was allowed to leave the house in front of her.”

Bobo – the dance lover

Bobo was fond of everyone in the family, especially Pooja’s mother Protima. “Mom was very close to Bobo. She taught her Jagannath Swami mudras, Namaskar etc…as Bobo used to be part of her dance rehearsals,” reveals Pooja.

The replacement

Bobo died at a tender age of 10. Her death left everybody in deep pain. As Pooja shares, “We were so heartbroken that we decided to never adopt pets again. But we couldn’t resist and in no time Taffy, once again a Lhasa Apso, entered our lives.” The void created by Bobo’s death was joyfully filled by Taffy. “Taffy added joy to our household. She was just too wonderful…loving…gentle…and so expressive that I could easily make out whatever she wanted…it was a wonderful connection. We were extremely close, as she followed me like a shadow,” remarks Pooja.

United in grief

Taffy’s death was really heartbreaking for Pooja but the most touching part was that the entire family came to her funeral.

The new entrant

Magic, Pooja’s third doggie, is adorable and sweet. She bought him home as a surprise to her kids – Omar and Aaleya. “I walked into my home holding magic in the palm…as he was quite tiny. My kids thought him to be a little toy and asked me if he was real…and the moment they came closer, Magic winked and they both jumped with joy. There was new joy in the family,” says Pooja. The reason behind the homecoming of Magic was as sweet as magic itself. As she narrates, “My kids were missing pets in their lives. And to my surprise, they started pestering me to have friends to play with. So, the consensus was to bring a puppy home.”

Magic meets Pandora

As Pooja’s household got familiar with gushing and cooing of l’il Magic, the need for another playmate was felt again. Pooja’s friend Anna Singh’s pet had a litter, and so she was invited to adopt one of them. Pooja along with family chose to adopt a Lhasa Apso and fondly named her Pandora.

Pandora and Magic mixed up well together in no time. “There’s a wonderful bond between these two siblings. Being quite protective and loving, Magic takes good care of Pandora. It’s a great sight,” asserts Pooja.

Made for each other

Omar and Aaleya share a loving relationship with both their pets, as their popularity is not just limited to home…but they are stars among their friends as well. “Magic and Pandora are so much fond of my children that they even accompany them for pick and drop to their school. With them, it’s always play time at home. They go shopping, walks and long drives with us. They are my adorable kids,” mentions Pooja.

A complete family

Food, grooming and all vaccinations are taken care of by Pooja. In fact, she feeds them what they relish, be it keema, chicken, cheese, mutton, chicken, and vegetables, especially tomatoes. “I keep changing their diet plan as I believe they have every right to be a part of the family table,” adds Pooja.

An appeal to all

On a concluding note, Pooja expresses her wish to be HUMAN to our cuddly canines and she adds, “Our pooches have short lives…just 10-14 years. So, I feel we should never deprive them for anything. Let them live the most.” And her message goes – KEEP THEIR SOULS HAPPY!

Boman Irani

Strict, short-tempered Prof Viru Sahastrabudhhe a.k.a. Virus around the college campus in Bollywood blockbuster 3 Idiots now comes out of the persona of the strict college principal to share his love of furry friends. Yes, we are talking about Boman Irani whose journey into the Indian cinema over the last ten years has delivered a hallmark of excellent roles in the movies like Munna Bhai MBBS (2003). Apart from being a film actor, theater artiste and passionate photographer, Boman is a keen pet lover too. He shares his glorious moments of pet parenting while interacting with Dogs & Pups.

 

Boman-IraniBorn on 1st October 1962 in Mumbai, Boman belongs to the Parsi community. He started selling out potato chips before photography appealed to him and then later it was the call of the theater. He worked with Alyque Padamsee in the play Roshni and Mahatma Vs Mahatma by Feroz Abbas Khan. Later, Boman was seen in TV commercials of Ceat Tyres and Smyle cough syrup. This proved to be the gateway to Bollywood. And he started receiving offers to work in movies in supporting roles.

Puppy love after marriage…

Boman’s puppy love started after he met Zenobia, currently his wife, 28 years ago. “My love for pets started growing after I got married with Zenobia,” said Boman. “To be frank, I was not a dog lover at all. As a kid, I was petrified with dogs and so have no nice memories with them,” said Boman in a thoughtful mood.

Win some, lose some!

Boman’s first doggie was Jolly, whom he loved a lot. After Jolly passed away, Boman and Zenobia adopted Layla – a Golden Retriever. Boman has two sons – Danesh and Kayur. The only wish he wanted to fulfill was to have a loving daughter, which Layla fulfilled easily. “Today I can’t even imagine my life without Layla, my most lovable,” revealed Boman.

Layla’s homecoming is yet another exciting tale Boman fondly shared with us. As one fine night, Danesh, Boman’s eldest son, informed all family members that a couple was moving out and so they wanted to offer their pet for adoption. The offering brought a big smile on everyone’s face. Next morning, all family members woke up early to welcome their new family member – Layla. “The moment the couple saw us, they felt they were giving their daughter to the right home,” exclaimed Boman.

A divine bond…

Layla’s first visit to Boman’s home was a moment to cherish for all in the family. “She came sprinting into the house and landed on the bed. Before we adopted her, she adopted us. It was a divine bond,” shared Boman.

Danesh and Kayur take good care of their younger sister. When the trio is together at home, they have a great time. Kayur has great control over Layla…when it comes to discipline. He ensures Layla remains a well-behaved and disciplined girlie. And he has all his faith in her that she would never do wrong. Whereas Zenobia takes good care of Layla’s routine and nutritional needs. She is a good mom to her. Layla loves to gorge on milk and roti cooked by Zenobia, who loves cooking delicacies for her.

The stress-buster…

Layla is quite a popular lass of the Parsi Colony, everybody knows her. So how about spending time with her… ‘Oh-so-great’ and he further added, “My day starts with her, in the morning when I am leaving for shooting, I always make it a point to say ‘hello’ and ‘bye’ to her. And in the evening we go out for long walks as Layla loves open spaces and greens. But my little girl is bit lazy as she always manages to take shortcuts.”

When Boman comes home after a long hectic day, Layla welcomes him in a way that she takes all his fatigue away. She accompanies him to his bedroom, sits on the bed, licks him and gives all ears to whatever he says. As Boman puts it, “The moment we all sit together, I discuss my day with Zenobia, while Layla simply sits listening to our discussions and gives her nod to express her concern. It’s really great…it’s destressing for me, and I love it.”

The antics

Layla hates to see her family members dancing at the parties…she is not very happy with the idea of dancing. Oh… so the girl has her dislikes as well. On asking whether there is something which is not so sweet about Lyala, there comes a reply, “Layla runs away with my socks and stands in a corner…thinking that I would chase her to find them and so it’s a kind of game to her. And when I call up Zenobia to tell that I am wearing torn socks, she finds it awfully sweet. Believe me, it’s irritating for me. But then I love my kiddo for that as I have more than 50 pairs of expensive socks with a hole.”

Boman’s bundle of joy also loves to play pranks. She knows how to wake up her momma, especially when she’s trying to take a quick nap. As Boman narrates, “When Zenobia is lying in the bedroom, trying to take some rest…ignoring our ‘come out’ calls, all we have to do is to ask Layla to get momma’s hairband. And next moment we see Zenobia coming out murmuring bad words, which we simply love….”

Responsible parenting…

Having a pooch is a big responsibility. They want a lot of attention and care like any child. “Layla is spoilt by our love and care. And I can’t afford to have another pooch kid as both my sons are too happy pampering their younger sister,” concluded Boman.