We were out vaccinating in Behala when the locals approached us asking us to go look at a blind pup.
Hachi was resting by a shop in a semi enclosed area - that's where she had spent her days and nights since being born. The locals at the shop were her primary care givers but weren't very sure if they could keep caring for her as she grows. They clearly wanted us to rescue her.
I was initially very apprehensive about seeing her or interacting with her since I knew this would only end one way - with me taking her home. I already have 5 dogs in the house and at times it can get a bit too much and they aren't always very welcoming to new members. So I avoided seeing Hachiko for 5 mins but then I had to given in. Initially she didn't want to be touched by the other volunteers and kept running away. When I approached she seemed interested probably cause I smell of dogs and she smells my pack on me. So I picked her up and cradled her for a bit. I realised what I was getting myself into.
The initial understanding was - I'm just fostering her till she finds a home but even when we picked her up and put her in the car I knew I had to keep her for good. It's very hard to find homes for Indies and she is disabled so it would be close to impossible to get her a home.
In the car we chatted about naming her while she sat still and a bit nervous on my lap. I tried to avoid naming her just to create a distance but by the time we were home - she was my Hachiko :) Next up was introducing her to my other 5 dogs - and they were mostly kind and incredibly curious.
Why did I bring Hachiko home ?
Because hers is a life and all lives matter and she very likely would not make it on her own. But this isn't the solution to the problem - how many can I bring in? This is a broader question of domestication and what that entails for these creatures and what might be the right thing for them. Balancing what ought to be done with what's natural and most suitable in this world!
I'm glad I brought her home not just because she needed it but a part of me needs it too. Dogs fill my heart with love - I need them to function and with them, love and care is always a two way street. And as they grow and come to believe in me as a mother or a friend, it is a wonder.
Seeing Hachiko live, play and grow shows how we creatures are programmed to survive and flourish. She is an animal first - geared to survive - then a dog - whose sense of smell alone can take her places - then a puppy - who enjoys being playful and curious and lastly a blind puppy who needs support as she gains experience in this world. I know she will never see me and we will never locks eyes but she can feel me and I know it's comforting and reassuring for the both of us to know we are there unconditionally in love, forever