5 things that my dog taught me

Sirius was only 36 weeks old when he came into our lives. A cute little fawn coloured Labrador pup that melted our hearts as soon as we held him. My siblings and I always had a pet dog around while growing up, but this was the first time when I had one on my own. I had spent days brainstorming a name for him,  before settling on Sirius – inspired by a character from Harry Potter.

cute labrador puppy

Unconditional Love

“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.”
Josh Billings 

You need to own a dog to understand what is it to love and care for someone without expecting anything in return. I cannot forget the joy with which Sirius would leap at our sight after a long day. Sometimes, when I would be in the kitchen and my husband in other room,  he would keep going to and fro, snuggling around the legs, happily licking our hands. I loved him and all his antics, including the chewed up toys and my expensive heels. And no matter how much scoldings he would get, he would still snuggle into our arms.

How to make a fussy dog eat?

Maybe I spoiled Sirius a little too much, but he was a fussy eater. I used to buy an extra unsweetened yogurt packet just for him because he wouldn’t even smell his food if it didn’t have a layer of yogurt over it. Or bones. The sight of him happily eating his food would make my heart fill with joy. I would even sometimes sit next to him and feed him Roti by hand as he preferred that way, much to the annoyance of my brother who was studying veterinary science back then and was an expert at training dogs.

You gotta be fit if you want a dog

Why? Because dogs need to exercise.  It is essential for their health to exercise and eat well, specially bigger dogs like Labrador and Alsatian. Labradors are prone to hip deformities if they don’t get enough exercise.  Which meant that I had to run alongside my dog. That’s how my tryst with jogging and walking started. Every weekend we would drive to a quiet location and spend around an hour walking or running. Most evenings my husband would take him to the roof and play with him with a tennis ball, teaching him new tricks as well.


I was always happy around Sirius. Sometimes I would talk to him and he would respond with a wine like sound. My husband would often joke that he was begging me to stop my chattering. But the joy of talking to an animal and in turn,  trying to understand his needs is amazing. I have such fond memories associated with Sirius. He was our little baby that made every single worry disappear.

Strangely, bathroom was his most favourite place in the house. He would often sneak into the bathroom if we happen to leave the door open. Giving him a bath was just as fun. He was so obedient and would stand still has I rubbed his coat, as if enjoying the whole process, unlike my previous dogs.

Someone truly said – “Anybody who doesn’t know what soap tastes like never washed a dog.”

They need love and care – just like any other baby

I used check out a lot of websites for reference, read articles on dog care and talk to other owners on how to care for a puppy. When we first got Sirius, he was so scared and tiny that he would wine at night.  I used to keep him right next to my bed, pat him every time he started wining.  That comforted him and he would catch a few winks too, with my hands slowly caressing his head. But that also meant I couldn’t sleep.  For a week,  I could catch only 2 hours of sleep every night. Thankfully,  after that he slowly got accustomed to the new environment. And no matter where we kept his bed, in the morning we would always find him next to ours.

Sadly, I didn’t get to spend many years with Sirius and had to find a new family as we were relocating to a different country.  The new family was just as loving as we were, maybe even more and I would often get updates of Sirius on Facebook. The one thing that didn’t change was his knack to find the most expensive of the shoes and shred only one of pair to pieces. 🙂

sirius labrador - dog care

“What Shoe!! I ain’t chew no shoe”

18 thoughts on “5 things that my dog taught me

  1. The adorable Sirius and his sweet lessons..The seek love and shower love too right!! Just like a baby . i dont have a dog, but have a fussy child, who probably teached me similar lessons too.OKie she isnt a fussy eater!

  2. I didn’t read the post. I lost my dog when I was 14, since then I just cannot look at another without tearing up. Sirius is lucky to have you guys but you guys are more luckier.

  3. I loved this post, Raj. More importantly, because my daughter has been after me for over a year to get a dog. I am mighty scared of dogs and haven’ t nodded yet. In my heart of hearts I really really want her to have one pretty soon. But my own fear makes me step back. Plus, I am scared of losing a loved one. Specially a pet. These are the main reasons I am still not able to give her Dad a go ahead. As I read your post, I could imagine Anu reading this out. I hope I am able to overcome my fear sooner to let the girl have her baby.

  4. Awww You know I agree with every word that you’ve written. I am experiencing all of it with Coco though he is not a fussy eater at all. You are right about the walks. They love them so much and you know that I run with him. So very enjoyable. If you don’t have a pet, you are missing something in life for sure.

  5. Oh no – I cant believe you gave up this bundle of love – heartwrenching Raj! I am sure you miss him a lot though I am glad ?(and am sure you are too) that he is with an equally loving family! Oooof dogs truly love more- my mom takes care of the strays around the house and they are always leaping on us to be petted and loved and literally die when we do so !!! I enjoy it so much when I am home!! Lovely pics of this adorable mutt

  6. What a relation you shared with Sirius. Every species teaches us something or the other…but dogs take it to another level. I am sure he is in good hands, and I am happy to read it too!

  7. thats a lovely name and yey u showed me things which generally nobody else have told me till now.. now my perception started to see other dimensions with it. thanks

  8. I have never had a pet in my life but some day I will. I like dogs and I think I can be a good dog-mommy 🙂
    Lovely name he has got, Raji and such a beautiful post. Made me smile.

  9. Aww isn’t he gorgeous! I do think pets are like kids. It’s enough to be a fur-parent and they love you unconditionally and unlike kids, won’t ever get into arguments with you once they reach teenage years! 😀 Shame you had to give him up though on moving. Are you thinking of getting another dog?

  10. Aww! Sirius is sooo sweet. Having a dog is the best gift you can give to yourself. There is so much to love and learn from them. I have written about the lessons from our dogs too. Have you read A dog’s Purpose – Ellie’s Story by W Bruce Cameon? It is a must read for all dog lovers. Do check it out!

  11. We were always around dogs as well. However, after wedding P and I didn’t get a dog because of the constant moving and shifting. We have finally decided to bring one home just because of the sheer love the doggie would give us. Such a heartwarming post, Raj. You would’ve been heartbroken in giving him away. BUt I’m gad you can still know his whereabouts! 🙂

  12. Your post brought back fond memories of my baby Chikoo, and now, I think I am going to cry…*sniff sniff*
    I miss him so…his unconditional love, his antics, his …everything about him, actually!
    Your SIrius does look adorable! They all are, aren’t they? These fur babies! <3 <3 <3

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