Pintoo..the street dog I loved !

Pintoo..the street dog I loved !

We named him Pintoo (may be the popular Indian nick name originated from the word : pint- sized).
He was a street dog. One among about the litter of five or six, delivered outside our house at Pune in India a few years ago.
We stayed on a feeder road. Not the main road, though. However, some traffic was always there. Especially in the night when the adrenaline and the alcohol were mixed up. Many puppies were crushed under the wheels, in this manner.
Fortunately, Pintoo survived. Proving, Darwin was right.
He was smarter and had an uncanny intuition to stay away from the impending disaster. We rather adopted him. He would sleep outside our yard. We made a temporary shed for him for the rainy season.
Although, he would get himself below a parked car during the summer and the rains.
He would come at the fixed time for his milk, egg, bread and the biscuits. The local gardener gave him a bath with a pipe. The neighboring Vet however took care of his inoculation, special feed, and vitamins.
He was although a mongrel,but very sensible and intelligent. He was my companion during the morning walks I took. We never chained him . He would walk beside me and would run if I jogged.
He would follow me up to a distance of about one km from my house. He would show his unhappiness whenever I took him beyond a Residential school located around one km from my house, which he thought was the boundary for him. The street dogs of the area would get together to oust him if he slipped in to their domain. He was once bitten by them too.
He suddenly disappeared one day. We were told a Municipality van had picked him up. Efforts to locate him proved futile.
It was only last week when I was invited to speak by the same residential school of Pune on an award winning ceremony. I thought of Pintoo while on my way to Pune. About five hour journey from the place I live at presently.
A competition was held that day to select the best all round pet.
I was asked to hand over the prize.
The owner arrived, so did the pet. I was reluctant to pat the dog, in fact was rather afraid, he may bite.
However, the pet bowed his head down, as if he knew me.
I saw the list.
His name was Pintoo!

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Published in Senior Chatters


  1. laurie

    Darwin’s theory of natural selection in the evolution of species is not relevant to the tragic plight of street dogs. For those with a genuine interest in helping these animals there are many groups working for their benefit, for example Humane Society International through its Street Dog Defenders program.

  2. Abhilaaj Post author

    The blog is about the story of a street dog. The way he lived his life and the happiness he brought to our lives. It may be read with in that framework.
    The reference to the Darwin’s theory was made in limited perspective only – in view of the survival of Pintoo , being the fittest among the other puppies.

    1. saffy123

      Just a couple of observations after reading this….the use of the word “yard”….very American and so not used in India…also a Vet that gave his services and medication, free of charge to a street dog?…Milk, egg and bread to spare?……so not the India I knew and travelled….maybe would have benefited some of the starving children more than a street dog…many of those around!!

      1. nmod

        Harsh comments to a beautifully written story .
        There’s poverty in most countries around the world .some places more than others ,that doesn’t mean people shouldn’t care about their animals .

  3. Rockflower

    The North American Indians believe we all have a totem animal , all animals that feature in their world, so the wolf is one such totem and I’ve always felt I’m of the wolf clan. I have lived amongst dogs my entire life except when I was in college. As I am writing now , three small dogs are asleep by and on my feet. I can read their expressions and body language even understand a lot of their ‘speech’. I feel deeply for these animals and have to guard against my empathy for them. At one time I had to drive daily past an animal shelter to get home. This forced me to see homeless dogs and witness their distress even though they were being taken care of. They were scared without love and wondering what their future was. I developed this mantra to chant as I drove past……Jane you cannot help all the unloved homeless dogs in this world…… Naturally I supported the shelter anyway I could, except I could not offer to work in the shelter because I would have found it too stressful to cope with. I applaud all those strong good souls that do. So suffice to say I found your little story moving.
    I have had in my care dozens of dogs in the last 38years and I’ve loved each different character but a few have been special. I’ve had rescued dogs of many shapes and sizes but I have also had corgi dogs and many miniature dachshunds. Three years ago I decided that I had time left in my life to have one more dachshund. I found a breeder and was delighted to learn that she was expecting one of her dogs to have a litter of cream coloured dachshunds, a colour I had never had. I told her I would buy a cream puppy when they arrived. When the pups were four weeks old she invited me to visit and see my cream pup and I made several visits. Each time I went I noticed a litter mate of my cream puppy. She was black with cream markings, this little pup, would just sit in front of me and stare at me. We would make eye contact and she would hold it, this is not a natural thing for a dog to do. Eventually I knew I just could not leave this black pup and told the breeder I would buy the two.Then the black pup came to me and fussed to be be picked up as if to say…..OK we need each other. I called her Lottie and we do have a special bond, I just know she is an old soul and we have met before this life.

    One of the comments to your story suggested something like, perhaps you should have helped the starving children in your town. Animal lovers often get this criticism thrown at them. In my experience those who care for animals are most likely to care for starving children too. There is a lot of misery in this world, most of it caused by humans. We have to accept our limitations, with the best will in the world we cannot help everyone and everything. We can only try to spread kindness and understanding in our own small corner of the world. We help what is presented to us personally , first. Then we can perhaps, take in the bigger picture and contribute money, time, energy to put that wrong to right.

    Thank you Abhilaaj.

  4. Abhilaaj Post author

    Tons of thanks and gratitude. Yours was the most pleasant response.
    But the following response by one

    ”Just a couple of observations after reading this….the use of the word “yard”….very American and so not used in India…also a Vet that gave his services and medication, free of charge to a street dog?…Milk, egg and bread to spare?……so not the India I knew and travelled….maybe would have benefited some of the starving children more than a street dog…many of those around!!” reader brought tears to my eyes and I stopped writing blogs later mainly because of a couple of such biased/ racist remarks. You have to pay a price for being a poor Indian alas. May God bless my fans and my tormentors both.