For the uninitiated - this is Joy - my third pet after Simba (who looked exactly like him) and Snoopy (who was a Doberman)..
Me, 8 years old, and I come back from school one day to find my parents looking at me and my younger brother with that excited smile on their faces. We went upstairs and our parents stood in front of the couch on the side, we could not understand why. Only when my father moved his legs a little, was I introduced to the biggest wonder that a boy/girl can ever have - no, it's no video game, it's not a bicycle - it was the most adorable pup on the planet and we decided to name him Simba.
Simba was a bundle of joy, partial to my mother, VERY attentive to my father's commands who he treated as his master (incidentally - there is only one person in each family who the dog obeys unconditionally - who in the truest sense, is the dog's master) and always wagging his tail with joy. When he was tired and let his tongue out loose, you'd say he was smiling because that is what his face looked like.. there was never a dull moment with Simba around - who used to sneak under the dinner table for scraps, snuggle up on stranger's feet and go sleep on them, let small kids pull his ears and sit on him, run around like crazy when it was too hit, try and catch birds in the garden.. he was all this and more..
Simba gave me a lot of happiness and a lot of good memories but the biggest gift Simba gave me was to teach me how to be truly selfess and really love without expecation, love without reason and love with all your self. No matter what the time, Simba would come to me at one call. When I returned home from school, Simba would already be there, waiting at the fates, always - there was not a single day when Simba did not meet me at the gate/door when I came back from school; not a single day when he would let me get away without him licking my face crazy; not a single day when he would not tell me how much he loved me.
He was my first dog, he was my first pet - he was my baby. He was the first person in whose upbringing I was completely involved. He was the first person I talked to on my birthday, early in the mornings, just to watch him tilt his head and quirk his eyebrows. He was my best friend, the best listener, the true faithful.
When Simba died,
I was heartbroken, and I did not know what to do as I saw a set of strangers bury my beloved dog in the ground in front of my house. I bawled like a baby and the hurt has not gone yet. But that is the beauty of having pets, that is the irony -
You know, you always know that they are not going to outlive you,
And yet, yet they value you more than anyone else..
There are so many things my pets have taught me..
And the biggest one of them was to love
Thank you Simba, may you always rest in peace.
Thank you Snoopy, for being the angel who always listened.
Thank you Joy, for continuing to make my days with your twinkling eyes