Monday, 18 August 2008

* tugging at my heart strings *

~ 18th August 2008 ~

I work in a kindergarten just behind my place and walking is of course the best and most economical reason compared to driving. As for the exercise bit, it hardly works up any sweat cos I am there within eight minutes tops.

One morning as I was nearing the school, I could hear a puppy's cry for help. It sounded as if it was coming from the huge drains just across from the school. I went in and the teacher told me a pup had fallen in.

So I went there and true enough, there was this little fella crying its lungs out for its mother to come get him. Mother was meantime walking up and down the length of the drain and saw me near her pup. She came and I spoke gently to her, clicking assuringly to let her know I meant no harm.

I gingerly held both sides of the drain and swung my feet into the deep drain. Standing in it, only my head was barely visible over the top. Imagine what a drop it had been for the little fella!

Moving slowly so as not to scare the fella, I reached it and quickly carried it up over the edge and placed it on the grass just as it turned its head around and barely missed my hand with its teeth in between a snarl. So much for gratitude.

The mother seemed grateful and they happily ran off together.

The next day, the same thing happened, twice and this time when I hesitated the second time, mother stood there and barked at me to hurry up! And to my surprise, it was a different pup.

We later discovered there were actually four pups altogether. I also noticed a few odd things I had to admire them for. When mother left them in a spot to scavenge for food, they stayed within the space she left them. One of them woke up once to find himself alone and started to howl for its mother and siblings. I came out thinking it had fallen into the drain but eventually I found it under a parked car.

The moment it saw me peering under the car, it clamped up, curled into a ball and stayed that way until its mother came back!

Another morning I heard a pup's cry for its mother and I found it in the smaller drain in front of a house's driveway. When it saw me, it stopped and looked away. I lifted the iron grill that covered the drain but it immediately walked deeper in where I could not reach it. Of course, it also snarled and snapped at me and I could see its tiny little sharp teeth. Sigh....I never could get it out and left it there.

Next day, I saw it out on the curb with its mother who seemed elated seeing me. I stroked the mother while the pup growled softly to warn me from touching it. By this time, we were wondering where the others were cos there was no sign of them for ages.

I noticed the pup's hind legs did not look normal. They seemed too relaxed as if lame. I suspected it was either due to the falls in the drain or someone's tyres had lightly rolled over them. I felt my heart strings tug and that was when my mind started to play with me.

All day I worried about the pup being knocked over as it tried to move around on its front legs, how it got from one place to another. I later found it around the same spot on its own. I walked up to it and just as I gently stroked its back, it slithered into a drain hole. I would have grabbed its tail or legs to get it out but it was growling fiercely and I did not have any protection. So I left and decided to come back for it later.

I prepared a box with two small towels and looked for my gloves that I used at my previous job. This box stayed ready at home.

It was Friday and I had the car by chance for the weekend. I cruised the area when it was not hot as I guessed it would come out from its hidey hole but I never saw it. I tried tailing its mother one day but she went somewhere else instead. I gave her biscuits in a small plastic bag a couple of times. She took the bag gently in her mouth and took it back to her pup to share. She's a good mother. She taught her pups defensive techniques and to stay and wait for her return. Sunday evening I did a few more rounds but no luck. :(

Monday morning I said a prayer that I needed to find that pup and bring it home. I wanted to check its legs and hoped that I would be able to give it a better quality life if I can help its legs be better with some massage therapy. When Guzz's mother first came to our home, one of her hind legs seemed to be limp and the vet told dad to do physio with it and now she runs and walks like any normal dog.

So, a little sad at my bad weekend search, I headed to school. Lo and behold, there was mother walking along the school's shallow drain. The teacher told me that the pup was in the drain and that's when I heard it cry for its mum. I was elated and stroked the mother who came up to me. However, when the little fella saw me, it tucked its tail in between its legs and kinda walked away to hide beneath the little bridge at my school's gate. Of course, it growled as it walked away. I tried to talk to it but it just growled and snarled and curled up quietly.

Mother left to scavenge as our fella fell asleep in that spot. I kept checking to make sure it stayed there and after school, I went out to do an errand with my mum. Upon our return, I enlisted the aid of our help and with box ready on the side, she with a broom and my hands in gloves holding a towel, I waited on one end as she tried to frighten it towards me.

The moment it knew I was waiting on the other end, it tried to go over the broom which freaked out our help as he was quite the growler. I yelled at her to shake the broom and try nudge him back at me. It was this point mother came back and she was getting excited with all the commotion. My help started to panic but I assured her the mother was not going to bite any of us.

For a suspect lame pup, it could escape quite fast from me. Partly cos it was a bit difficult for my two left feet to nimbly run in that uneven drain after it. It was in desperation I threw the towel over its head before scooping it up in my gloved hands and shouting for the box as I got out of the drain. The little fella howled and mother started to bark concern.

Funnily as soon as I placed the little fella into the box, it gave one last yelp and curled up into a ball and shut up! Even when I called its mother to come reassure it, it did not make one squeek. I softly told its mother I was taking her baby home to take care of his legs, to give him a better life. She seemed to understand and enjoyed the stroking from me as I spoke. When I stood up, she just looked at us and stood aside. I said to my mum to drive a little faster as I did not want mother to follow us.

Surprisingly she did not. This got me thinking, 'Maybe her pup being where it was was not a coincidence but her own feelings of assurance knowing I was there to watch over it. I guess she did not think I would take it away from her. I'm sorry but I can only afford to take one home.

From the minute the little fella was placed in the box to my house, it made no sounds. It did not try to climb out of the box nor get up at all. I readied a bigger box and gently tipped it into it. He gave me a suspicious stare as he moved to a corner in bewilderment.

He was afraid of his new surroundings and of the crazy person that kept talking softly to him and patting him on the sides of his face. He wanted his mother but he dared not cry out. However he was beginning to enjoy that patting and his eyes felt heavy. He was getting sleepy but he was still cautious and kept opening his eyes often to make sure his patter was not going to harm him. Sleepy....sooo sleepy.

1 comment:

  1. good to see you are blogging again.. yahoo....

    eh.. you are the Malaysian Dog Whisperer!!!