A woman’s best friend
“I’ve had 13 dogs in my life till now! Growing up, after school, I’d go straight to the kennel and spend hours with my puppies until granny dragged me home. I was 5 when mom passed–they were my therapists with furry noses and wagging tails. They helped me through the heartbreak and every time we snuggled, life seemed easier.
Naturally, I dreamed of becoming a Vet. I helped out at my Vet’s office since I was 10, volunteered at animal welfare NGOs and rescued injured puppies. But there was no convincing my family of this ‘unconventional’ career–I was pressured into studying Engineering.
By the time I was 19, I was in college and dating Ali, my now husband. One rainy day, Ali and I saw a shopkeeper beating up a helpless puppy–I ran to pick her up. She was so tiny that I fit her into my bag and snuck her past hostel security. We weren’t allowed pets, so I fostered her till she found a home. I taught her tricks so that my peers warmed up to her and smuggled her in and out of the hostel so we wouldn’t get caught.
Once, she jumped out of a laundry basket with a bra and underwear hanging off her and came running to me. That’s how Panty pretty much named herself! Over time, I just couldn’t give her up. Honestly, it was Panty who saved me–she brought me closer to my dream career.
During one of her vaccinations, the vet saw how well trained she was, and asked, ‘Why don’t you try dog training?’ A light bulb switched on– I even found a course for it, but my family refused to pay, because it wasn’t a ‘real job’. So Ali and I pooled our savings, and I went for it. Soon after, I got my first client through that same vet. Word spread and more clients poured in! Panty became my little helper and came along for every appointment. I’ll never forget the joy I felt when I trained a rescue dog to overcome his past trauma and connect with his new family!
It’s been 8 years and I’ve trained 500 dogs, but the feeling of spending every day with my fur babies is like no other– all because of Panty! From giving me my dream career, to being the cutest ring bearer while I married Ali, she’s been my best friend. Also, just how cute is her name?”
Collected from Humans of Bombay