Friday, November 06, 2009

Project Accomplished!


Toby - a good and quiet dog

Nicely rounded, Toby is huggable!

Toby with her expressive eyes
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Toby is so far the dog that I have taken care of for the longest period of time. I ended up looking after Toby longer than expected, for due to the delays in getting their new home ready in Dubai, Gayatri had postponed Toby's flight.

Of course I was happy when that happened, because it meant Toby could stay longer in Singapore. Gurion Ang, the toastmaster who is studying Zoology was right when he said, "Many people do not keep pugs. But once you have pugs, they grow on you!"
The first time I saw Toby, I wanted to laugh. For she reminded me of the three little pigs! Later I found her not only cute, but quite pretty too. In Mandarin, they say, "nai kan", meaning something looks more attractive the more you look at it.

Looking after someone's beloved dog proves to be an even heavier responsibility for me. How would I account to the owner should anything untoward happen to Toby?
Hence, every morning, I would pray for God to bless Toby. That Toby would not get sick. That Toby would not get diarrhoea, as she had the habit of picking up food she found on the ground whenever I took her for a walk. That Toby would be safe from danger and be not harmed. I was always vigilant and would stop Toby from picking up food whenever I took her out for a walk.

Whenever I was out of the home, I would hurry back to stay with Toby. Toby disliked to be alone in the home.

Thank God that by the time Toby was ready to fly to Dubai, she had always been healthy. She was never sick. Animals cannot talk, and I would be grieved if Toby ever fell sick. She would not be able to tell me where the pain was. I only had to worry about her diet, for Toby just loved food.....anything that is edible! Unlike my neighbour's dog, Bobby who is always suspicious of food, Toby would be just game to try anything that I ate. She must be thinking, "If it's good for humans, it must be good for me too". Nevertheless, she is an intelligent dog who seems to understand what I am saying. Once I said to her, "Toby, chocolate is tasty, but it is a no, no, for doggies, understand?" She looked at me with her expressive eyes, and walked forlornly away. I just love Toby!

When I learnt that eggs are good for prevention of cataract, I decided to give Toby some eggs twice a week. I would cut the egg into smaller pieces and press them with a fork after which I would mix her dry food with the egg.

Time seemed to fly! It was already three and a half months that I had looked after Toby! By then, the kids in my block had grown quite attached to Toby for they would come to my apartment to look for Toby. Each time I came back from an outing, Toby would dance round and round as if to welcome me home and to tell me how much she missed me. My ex-colleague, Mr. Ong, once told me that his dog would bark and jump with joy, eagerly awaiting his presence at the door, while his two teenage sons would just ignore him! "Better to have a dog, than children", he would lament.

It took me a little while to adjust to life without Toby. I miss her so much, and her photo is a wallpaper on my computer screen, so that I can see her photo before I start typing. May God continue to bless and protect Toby in her new abode in Dubai.

Though I decide not to dog-sit for a while, I know my heart would soften when someone requests me to help look after his dog again.

Gan Chau

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