Thank god I was born a dog and not a cat or a turtle or a spider. Or else my present family wouldn’t have adopted me. They hate the other kinds. They call me chora, bhai, babu, kale. I am baffled by the names they call me. Humans are funny animals.

I can’t recall my life before being adopted. But I can still smell my mother - the birth mother and I often see her in my dreams. Apparently I dream. This I knew when for the first time my adopted mother mentioned my antics during sleep to the rest of the family members. I should drop ‘adopted’ now.

Earlier my house was filled with the chatter, noises, and jokes of my sisters. I have three sisters. They are all out of the country now - for studies and work. The house seems empty without them. Since the sisters have the same voice, earlier when one called my name, I used to look at the other one. Gradually things got easy and I  could tell people from their voices but my olfactory nerves came very handy. When I miss my sisters, I sleep on their bed. But most of the times I sleep on my own bed. When they Skype with their parents, they seek to see me and hear my bark. Man, I miss them. Since they have no brother, they treat me as one. They religiously send me dog food and toys from abroad. When they were here, they used to get pizzas for me. Did I tell you that I love pizzas? Salami pizza is my favorite. My other favorites are ice-cream, and chocolates. I have sweet tooth.

When I was very small and new in the family, I was a wreck. I couldn’t put my fingers to which is what. And I was surrounded by too many walking, talking, and noise-producing towering figures all the time. Later was I to know that they are the frames of my family members, tables, chairs, and freeze, basically anything taller than my miniature structure. Since my sisters claimed (they still do) to love me, they used to fight over me. And funny thing is they all used to look at me. Imagine six big eyes glaring at me - expecting me to resolve their argument. I never understood their need to extract answers from me when they clearly knew that I couldn’t TALK. When my siblings were here, they used to talk to me every time. They talked to me like they were talking to another human being. They complained about life, love, their relationship, career problem. They wouldn’t even share their feelings with their fellow humans but  they would with me. They think I am blessed to have been born as a dog. They say I have no problems in life and that my life is easy. I just look at them and think- “You guys have no clue.”

For one I hate to take a bath. And I hate injections. I don’t like to be photographed and I don’t like to have milk every day. But I am subjected to all. I don’t seem to have a say over anything. And I hate the kids in my neighborhood. They tease me for no reason. And just to teach them a lesson I make this angry face and snarl at them. You should look at me then. I put the mask of the fiercest dog in the planet and their fear gets reflected in their eyes. Their parents should have taught them well. Had they treated me well, I would have reciprocated. I don’t know about you humans but in our dog world we have a saying - Tit for Tat.

It is funny the things my father and his friends talk about. Each thinks he is the most knowledgeable person in the world. I can’t fathom why they talk about the same things every time they meet - sports, politics, finance and more of that. If only I could laugh at their faces.

Now something about my own kind- there is this group of stray dogs in our locality. Even though they stink, I am friends with them. But they are envious of me. They don’t have any specific place to sleep whereas I have a beautiful home. They are always involved in fights with dogs of other locality and I am a pacifist. I get to eat delicious food and they rummage through garbage. My heart goes out to them especially during monsoon. They are all drenched and yet find no shelter. I have a family which treats me as equal and loves me unconditionally; whereas they are unloved. They are subject to inhuman acts, and even if they get beaten up, tortured, or get killed nobody would care whereas if I don’t have my meal my family would bring heaven and earth together. Once during my evening walk, I met this dog which had a dog tag on but still wandered off in the streets. He was discarded by his family. Poor guy!