Frustrated, Furious and Ferocious—it is a sad truth that we as a magazine have always believed in. Just unfortunate to have experienced it in real life! So, on first of March this year I was sitting at my home and sipping some tea at 7 pm, my son Suhaan, who is ten years old, had gone down with an elder to fetch something he forgot in the car. Unfortunately, and to all our dismay, Suhaan saw an Akita called Victor by the gate. Victor is this beautiful AKITA breed (the same breed of dog in the famous heart-touching movie Hachiko starring Richard Gere). For the past one year, since Victor has been our neighbour, I have always had an intuition about him that he is not friendly, based on my past experience with him when he had tried to lunge at me.

Since then each time we crossed Victor, I would reinforce and tell Suhaan never to touch him. Maybe, that evening since I was not there with him, Suhaan reached out to Victor to say hello. Another rule which Suhaan is well aware of and which we have taught in our workshop ‘Friends 4 Ever’ in schools—never reach out to a dog, let the dog be comfortable and come and meet you. What happened next was utter misery and mayhem for the next whole month—hospital, injections, treatment, 12 stitches, not to forget the overall pain and trauma because of the dog bite.

In all this, I have always questioned, ‘who is at fault—the dog or his pet parents?’ I would say it’s the pet parents. A: The dog breed Akita is meant for Japan, a cold weather country, not for India. B: The dog needs to live in a big house and not meant for a small flat. C: The dog cannot be put in the balcony in Delhi’s hot weather. D: Akita is a powerful breed and requires proper exercise and mental stimulation. Sadly all these criteria were not met. What happens when we go against the basic needs and wants of the dog? When the pet parent does not realise what the dog needs – the dog becomes FRUSTRATED, FURIOUS and FEROCIOUS.

We all have our basic needs and if they are not met, frustrations creep in, it happens with us and it happens with our pets too. After Suhaan got bit, there was another unfortunate person who got bit. Finally the dog now has been shifted to Hapur as the second injured person filed a case against the pet parents.

This incident made us all extremely sad and the pain which Suhaan still experiencing mentally and physically is a constant reminder. Before getting a furry member, pet parents should completely study the breed’s nature and their own environment and time they can give. Bringing a dog home is your dedication to him or her at least for the next 14 years of your life. It is a big commitment to your little one, yourself and your environment. One of my best experiences has been in being a ‘DOG MOMMA’—everyday and every moment I miss Sparkle so much. Parenting comes with a responsibility and requires time, love, effort, dedication, channelising and so much more.
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Shweta
shweta@dogsandpupsmagazine.com