Meet Marshall. He’s a loving, 8 month old (I can’t be too sure of the actual age) lab-mix. After loosing Coco a lot of people advised me to get a new dog ASAP. But I just couldn’t get myself to do it, it seemed wrong in a way, an insult to Coco’s memory. How could he be so easily replaced? And so I dealt with his absence and came to terms with the fact that he may never come back. His loss affected my entire family in very different ways. My sister bought another lab and fortunately I had the privilege of occasionally living with her family (her hubby and her) and helping out in bringing up Caesar. We went through another round of gastro with him, fortunately he survived. Came out stronger, if I could say so. Now he’s a complete menace, with a mind of his own, he’ll be the most obedient dog when it’s just his mom and dad, but should a guest (read: me) come home, all hell breaks loose.
And still I wasn’t ready yet to bring one of my own. I can’t fathom what came over my mom when she decided that we needed a dog. Her primary objective was a guard dog, to scare away any trespassers. Since we had moved to a new property, a huge 2.1 acre bungalow with a low fence. It was an easy target for school children passing by to pick tamarinds off the huge trees. We’ll get a stray off the road, that’s what she had decided.
And so after my dear sisters research, we came across Mission Possible and the lady behind it– Padmini Stump. Such a big heart that woman had, nestled in the Shankar Seth roads of Pune was her dog shelter. She had been responsible for single handedly taking care of abandoned dogs and strays. We went, we met her. I saw so many dogs, in such miserable conditions 😞 A dog had half his ear chipped off because some neighborhood kids had set off a firecracker in his ear, another one had wounds all over his body– he was used as bait to train other guard dogs. All rescued and all of them had started trusting in humans again thanks to her! Human beings can be really cruel sometimes. And then there are those who open their hearts and homes to service, not humankind, but the ones in most need of help the pets/strays.
Once she knew our requirements she showed us her Doberman- Tiger. Nice and loveable, he would do. But my heart was set on Coco. “Do you have any labs”,I asked hopefully. And out they came one by one.
Kajal-She was so loveable and full of energy! Your typical lab. What Coco could have grown up to be. And then came Marshall. A thin lanky cute little angel. He’s the ginger coloured dog in the pic above! He had some small wounds and some skin coming off but we knew when we saw him it would be him. And just like that the decision was made. Padmini would come to our house to drop Marshall off the next day!
The next day when she got Marshall home, he jumped out of the rickshaw and came running down the pathway to greet us and we towards him. It was as if we were being reunited and he was always ours, always meant for us. I’ll never forget that moment, when he just rushed into my arms without a moments hesitation. He knew he was home!
Since the day I got Marshall in our lives, we never looked back. Everyday was an adventure. He didn’t have the typical over energetic behaviour of labs and the intent to destroy and chew evrything that comes his way. So we bought him a new home
And then he destroyed it after a few days 😂😂 I got him a ball to play fetch, he loves chasing after it. Although he never brings it back to me, he’s more than happy to chew away at it.
I love taking him for walks around the property, although he loves running wild, free and chasing the squirrels or the ants scurrying away for the day. It’s such a delight watching him in action. Like a gazelle he prances through the property chasing the squirrels and cats that always elude him or barking the pigs of the property. When I leave him free to run around, that’s when he is really in his element, runs around to his satisfaction and then comes back to me😍
He loves his car rides, my Marshu and he’s quick to jump on the seat if the door is open. P.S when no ones there in the car, he’s always my co-passenger. The best to-date. Yes, he directly jumps on the seat and is set to take in the sights with his tongue out and ears flapping in the wind.
I love him so dearly, but does that mean he has replaced Coco? I don’t think so. I always whisper to him about his older brother who too would’ve loved to help him chase the birds, butterflies, cats and pigs. How Coco is watching over him, happy that he has a home now too. I’m sure they would have loved each other.
Just like me, he too is a fussy eater. Probably that’s why he hasn’t put on much mass since he got here. I’m sure with time as he growls older, he’ll put on some more. Of course not to the point of becoming obese but still…everyday is an adventure with him and I’m looking forward to what’s next. A lot of times people ask me, is he a lab or is he a stray. Honestly I don’t care. He’s Marshall!