Spice of Life : Pepper

Before Pepper

: “We have had 8 dogs at our place (his parents’ home) and I know everything about dogs. Would take them for walks, bathe them, have taken them to hospitals, have handled the new born pups to even ferocious ones and have assisted when ‘Laila’ was giving birth to her 6 puppies”….

SG : “We have had a Pomeranian at my parents’ home. She was a sweet lil’ dog. A real friend, not much of a demanding pet, rather a quiet member of our family”

AG : “We should have a dog at our home, I love them. When will we have one?”



One fine day in April 2006 at Jodhpur, Pepper, a month old Dalmatian entered the Garg family. A cute lil’ baby, loved and pampered by all 3 of us.

Then a month later, he fell ill. It was the hot weather, the vet said. The whole of May passed in taking our new baby to the hospital for shots and drips every morning and evening, feeding him with a syringe, because, he was too frail to eat on his own. And since we couldn’t tie him with the leash, he would roam around anywhere in the home and thus would do sussu-potty anywhere and anytime. Of course, I did the cleaning part without a frown. His being healthy was more important than anything else. And by God’s grace, he became fit and fine. And life was once again warm and fuzzy, happy and loving with Pepper in our life!

And then what followed was….

After the initial euphoria, the men of our family got back to their regular routines.
The vast and rich “walking, feeding, bathing, and handling of dogs experience” of KG was never put to use for Pepper because he was too busy with his work, travel or plain tiredness. All he could manage to give was a weekly bath to our Pepper!

AG, a 4 year old then, was too young to do anything of consequence for Pepper at that time… No, he used to play with ball with him!

So that left me. The cute lil Pepper turned into a giant Pepper who somehow turned into a WILD dog.


No amount of training from a professional helped him to mend his wild ways. The doctor said that may be the month long illness as a pup had affected him mentally! I agreed with him.

Sussu-potty anywhere in the home, barking incessantly, turning our beautiful garden into a ploughed field with deep trenches were some of the minor aberrations. It was a harrowing time for me. With no help or support system, taking him for morning and evening walks made me dog-tired, literally and figuratively. Most of the times, I would be running after him on the roads, when he would break free from his leash! To divert his vast energy, it was mandatory to play with ball or frisbee with him, run with him, when I had a hundred other things to do. Aah! Life with Pepper was one hell of a back breaking and tiring ride for me….

One day in November 2006, I took Pepper to the vet hospital for his vaccination. I saw a man looking at Pepper with keen interest and finally he told me that he was looking for a male Dalmatian as he had 2 female Dalmatians. I gave an ultimatum to the husband and son and gladly gave Pepper to spice up somebody else’s life.

After Pepper

The two men in my life have never forgiven me for doing this to them. Whenever they see a dog, they talk about owning one, sometimes soon.

I smile and let them day dream!!

Disclaimer : For all the dog lovers out there, I know, the only creatures that are evolved enough to convey pure love are dogs and that they are our link to paradise…. let me share that I love dogs but from far. I believe, having a pet dog is a huge responsibility and a big commitment and not everybody is ready for that!

Linking it to Write Tribe’s Wednesday prompt : Choose two photos you treasure, and write a post about it. Talk about the memories that surround it.

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60 thoughts on “Spice of Life : Pepper

    • Pepper surely looked gorgeous! It was just that he was a ‘bit’ troublesome! 🙄
      Aah! With a 4 year old child and a bratty pet… I surely had a back-breaking time! 😐

  1. Oh yes, Shilpa! I have had personal experience of a dog who turned crazy. I love dogs but this guy made our life a miserable hell. I am glad you took the decision to give him away. It can be mental torture if you don’t. Luckily now I have an angel in Coco who is just pure love in furry form.

    • Aah! You experienced a tough time too!! Oh, dont ask, it was a nightmarish experience. Remembering those days gives me shivers still! You are blessed to have Coco in your life. Touch-wood!

  2. I can understand your situation. My husband bought 35 days old Labrador after lot of hue and cry, saying he can handle a dog. But as expected I ended up taking care of him and he would just play with him. But he is a darling and is currently a part of my friend’s family. It’s good to let your dog go to people who care. We get attached to them so badly that letting them go to anyone we feel won’t love them as much as we did, hurts. I am glad pepper found a new home and got playmates too. 🙂
    Rajlakshmi recently posted…Saas-Bahu and Sneaking RotiMy Profile

    • Oh, you too had a similar experience! I have realized that you definitely need at least 2 people to take care of the dog. Glad that we found a good home for Pepper!

    • We had a pet at my parents’ place and she was an angel. But this experience with Pepper has put me off from dogs, forever! 😛
      Thanks PI.

    • Oh dont fall into that trap at all, S. We have told AG that he can have a pet when he is old enough to take care of him all by himself and of course I will help/support in taking care too. But am not at getting a pet dog at home if I have to handle him single handedly!

    • Oh some dogs are real angels! Candy at my parents’ home was like that too. She never gave any grief or trouble to us. You know, she would sit near the door when it was time for my dad to return home and in case he was late, she would not budge from there till he was home!

  3. I whole heartedly agree with your last sentence. “let me share that I love dogs but from far. I believe, having a pet dog is a huge responsibility and a big commitment and not everybody is ready for that!”

  4. Loved the style of presentation Shilpa :). Having been bitten by a stray as a child, I choose to keep a safe distance from dogs. However I completely understand your predicament, everyone wants to play around with their own pet but nobody wants to do the behind the scenes chores.
    Reshma recently posted…QueenMy Profile

    • Aah! That will surely put anybody off dogs!!
      Oh yes, everybody loves to play with the pet dog and that too for a few minutes but there is a LOT of work involved when you have a pet at home. Thank you Reshma! Glad you liked this post! 🙂

  5. Dogs are a big responsibility. I used to be a cat person. Grew up only ever having cats. Then I married my husband. He finally talked me into getting a puppy which I was clueless about what to do with it. Then…he brought how a baby Boston terrier as a present for me. I have fallen head over heals with my Jolly dog, and after all these years I love my Puppy Love as well. Then I got roped into taking in a min pin we named Tia and a chihuahua named Zoe who honestly drives me to drink. But I am happy with my little doggy family. 4 is definitely enough!! If I had a life beyond writing and my kids, I probably never would be able to juggle them all.
    Kathy Combs recently posted…The ProposalMy Profile

    • I am laughing out loud @ ‘Zoe who honestly drives me to drink’ 😀
      4 is definitely enough! Hats off to you for managing all of them so well. I nearly died with just 1 😛

  6. I do not know if I should empathize with you or pillory you.
    Perhaps since you had the dog for a long while you must have avoided the unthinkable.
    Indeed it is lot of responsibility and commitment having a dog and as import as begetting and bringing upchildren.

    • Oh, I loved dogs before Pepper, but living with him has put me off dogs now. It is indeed a big responsibility and yes, equivalent to bringing up kids!

  7. Aww…I love the name Pepper…it goes so well with his personality! Some cute pictures of him here! We seem to have a lot in common Shilpa. I have been through the same kind of experiences of parting with my pets thrice in the past. Rather it was my mum who had to bear the brunt of dealing with these unruly dogs who chewed off her furniture, bit people, made us chase them on roads and refused to get toilet trained! In frustration, we had to hand them over to people who could take better care of them. So now, even if my mum gets tempted to get another pet, she reminds herself of the hard times she faced with these three dogs and stops herself 🙂
    Although we have had our share of well behaved pets too. I currently have a lab at my place who is quite rowdy but manageable. You could read about him on this blog post of mine if you’re interested: http://vinodinii.blogspot.in/2014/04/romp-ades-rogue-ades-with-roger.html

    By the way, I read your post on Aryan’s birthday celebrations at SOS and Mother Teresa Home. He’s indeed a lucky child to be guided by such compassionate parents. Please excuse this lengthy comment. There was so much to share with you 🙂
    Vinodini Iyer recently posted…A Block for the Writer’s Block!My Profile

    • OMG!! I read your post about Fenny! Looks like Pepper and Fenny were made from the same mould! Wow, you are blessed to have Roger 🙂
      Thank you reading the old post too! It is so wonderful that we have so many similar experiences 🙂
      PS : Loved your comment here, Vinodini 🙂 ♥

  8. 100% with you on this SG.. it is a big responsibility. I am a dog lover and we had more than half a dozen in our village.. so I have always had dogs as pet.. came ot uk and the first thing i did after buying my house was go visit the local Rspca and get myself a puppy.. But a month later I returned it .. As I was not being able to give it time..

    I left home at 8am and came late nights , weekend was not enough to look after one.. and although my neigbour and house mate help but it was not good.. I could see how sad the pup was .. alone .. the hour or so spent each day with him was not worth making it so sad all day long ..

    but now that i read your article I think it is time to get one now .. as I have a bit more time now and no work on weekends .. lets see maybe i will 🙂

    Bikram recently posted…2 in 1 – Wordless Wednesday(44) and Thursday Challenge (51)- BRIGHT COLORSMy Profile

    • Aah! Dont let this dishearten you from having a pet dog, Nibha. But yes, remember that having a pet dog is akin to having a baby at home! So, prepare yourself accordingly 🙂

  9. You did the right thing by giving away your pet Shilpa. If people in the family are ready to share the responsibility then its a different matter altogether. How much can a single person dare and endure.

  10. People don’t realise that having pets is a responsibility. They are entirely dependent on you and you have to look after them. I love dogs but given my lifestyle and where I live, I know it’s not possible to have one. Instead I settled for cats and even though they are fairly independent creatures, mine are such clingy sooks. It’s a huge responsibility but unlike with dogs, at least I don’t have to walk them or anything… 🙂
    Psych Babbler recently posted…A change in the air. MaybeMy Profile

  11. I have never had pets, but I can still understand the amount of responsibility and hard work it takes to take care of them. I think given the situation you describe here, you did the best. The two men also surely understand 🙂 But being men they just like to daydream more often 🙂 It was an enjoyable read, Shilpa!
    Beloo Mehra recently posted…Village TempleMy Profile

  12. Such a sweet dog but dogs are a big responsibility. I think you did the most loving and kind thing in giving him to someone who would take care of him well. Both looking after and giving him away must’ve been a tough thing to do. I had 2 dogs and they become part of the family – broke my heart when they both died.
    Suzy recently posted…Lost and FoundMy Profile

  13. Oh, dogs are lovely, but so much work… our poodle Pixie is such a bundle of joy but he’s a totally spoilt brat! We love him to bits 🙂

    I guess you did right by giving Pepper to someone who might be able to manage him better. Being with other dogs may improve his behavior too. Managing pets can be a real tough and full time job — and it ultimately comes down to mommy to manage them !
    Ash recently posted…Saying ‘NO’ Is Not Disrespectful !My Profile

  14. Your Pepper is too cute, I don’t know how you had the heart to give him away.
    He would have become manageable in just a few more months.
    I also felt like giving away each of our dogs when they were puppies, but somehow controlled myself, and feel very happy i did not give in to it.
    Well except me and my husband, everybody only loves to play with the dogs.
    Of course we do have helps who also love these dogs and help us a lot, especially when have to go out of town.
    I can understand your frustration in keeping up with the puppy. Also I can understand how difficult it is to keep a dog in an apartment.
    Whether it is house or an apt. it only means lots of patience and commitment.
    Your doggy is absolutely a darling. I wish him well wherever he is.
    rama recently posted…Awesome Water Flavored With Vegetables And FruitsMy Profile

    • May be … may be not! But glad that he found a home and playmates too!
      Thank you for sharing your experiences, Rama and your dogs Loki and Bumbilli are simply adorable! 🙂

  15. I can understand how much you must have deliberated before giving away Pepper. Love the name, he looks so cute. My Sparky is an angel and that’s why we four will do anything to keep her happy and healthy. I would have done the same in your place, handling an aggressive dog is very tough. I had a friend who had a similar problem with a dalmatian pup, she gave him up when she couldn’t handle his destructive behaviour. We have been feeding my Sparky by hand for the past 8 months now as both her kidneys are damaged, give her a drip every alternate day. Both my kids and my husband take turns in doing things for Sparky. Take care, you did the right thing, hugs

    • Oh, Pepper was the cutest one as a baby but he became the wildest one in some time. Every time, I see Sparky’s pics, I am reminded of Pepper. Sparky is such a contrast to our Pepper. God bless him with good health. He is blessed to have a loving family as you. Hugs 🙂

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