She would follow Naira everywhere she went. When Naira went to her friend’s house, she would find her sitting outside the gate waiting for her. When she went to the temple to pray, she would find her standing outside away from all other dogs just to follow Naira back home.
Lovingly Naira named her Bhoori because she was fair. Bhoori had dark eyes, a furry tail and looked extremely innocent. Being a street dog, Bhoori was not allowed inside the house but that did not deter her from sitting all day outside Naira’s house. She was partial to Naira because Naira made sure that Bhoori was fed on time. She would take bread and milk for Bhoori in a box and served her thrice a day.
Bhoori was always calm, never barked at anyone, never howled at night. She would simply sit outside Naira’s house and watch little kids play.
One afternoon something happened that brought Naira closer to Bhoori. Naira was coming back from her friend’s house. As always Bhoori was walking behind her. Every moment she would look here and there. She would turn back and then try to walk along with Naira instead of walking behind her.
All of a sudden a car stopped right next to them and tried to pull Naira forcefully inside the car. Bhoori started barking loudly, as loud as she could. Not only she barked, she attacked the men fiercely, she was not the same calm Bhoori. This time she was a fierce dog, loud, strong and ferocious. She attacked one of the men so hard that he screamed with pain. Soon two three cars that were passing by stopped and held the two men. Police and Naira’s parents were informed. ‘I was passing by when I saw this dog attacking one of the men and the little girl was crying for help. This is one brave dog.’ one of the witnesses told Naira’s Dad.
Naira hugged Bhoori and Bhoori like a little child moved its face in Naira’s lap. From that day Naira and Bhoori were inseparable. Naira would talk to Bhoori and tell her everything that happened. Bhoori would spend hours making sure that Naira was safe.
Their friendship was pure and beautiful. ‘Sit, Bhoori sit, sit sit’, Naira would say cheerfully as Bhoori obediently sat down wagging her tail. Everyone clapped and Naira felt proud.
Naira’s dad suggested that Bhoori shoud be sent to a dog shelter so that she could have a home instead of roaming around in the streets but every time he mentioned dog shelter Naira started crying. He made sure that Bhoori got regular vaccinations so that there are zero chances of infection.
Days passed like this. One day Bhoori and Naira were crossing the road when a speeding bike hit Bhoori. Bhoori’s front left leg was injured. Naira panicked and Bhoori was taken to the hospital. After a few days Bhoori was fine but walked on three legs lifting her front left leg up. May be she was afraid of putting it down. Naira made sure Bhoori overcame her fear. She would go to the park for a walk and Bhoori would follow her and Naira made sure that Bhoori used both her front leg. Sometimes when Naira tried too much Bhoori would try to run away from Naira but as soon and Naira pretended to be upset, Bhoori would come back running, both hugged and within a month Bhoori was walking on four legs.
It was Naira’s thirteenth birthday; she took some milk and bread for Bhoori. Bhoori was sitting on her spot. She looked weak but as soon as she saw Naira coming she got up playfully wagging her tail. She couldn’t eat much and after a while fell asleep. Naira was worried about Bhoori. Bhoori not only looked weak, she looked old. She was not able to follow Naira everywhere and even when she tried she had to stop after every two-three minutes.
‘Dad, I am worried about Bhoori. She is getting old. She can’t even walk. Can’t we do something for her?’ Naira shared her concern with her dad. ‘Sure, we can help her. We can send her to a dog shelter and they would take care of her.’ Dad suggested. ‘I can’t live without her’, Naira said crying. ‘You can go and meet her anytime you want’, Dad suggested. ‘Is it? Will they love her just the way I do?’ Naira asked. ‘Of course, they would’, Dad assured.
The next day they took Bhoori to the dog shelter. On her way to the shelter Naira kept looking at Bhoori trying to smile while Bhoori simply laid down, she looked sad as if knew everything. When they reached the shelter a woman came to receive them. ‘She is so beautiful, so cute. She has grown old. We will take care of her’, she said as soon as she saw Bhoori. The woman looked amiable. Somehow Naira felt she could trust her. ‘Please take care of her. She is my best friend and she loves to eat only bread and milk. She likes to play with a ball and she never fights and she likes if we hug her and and she loves little kids, kids love her too and she she….’ Naira’s voice choked and she could not speak more. Dad hugged Naira and consoled her, ‘Naira, this is the best for Bhoori. She is growing old, she needs special care.’
‘Yes, my dear, dogs should not be left on streets it neither good for them nor for the people. Sometimes dogs fall sick and there is no one to look after them. You should have brought her here earlier but it’s never too late’, the woman explained. ‘We bring street dogs here and look after them. They are happy here’, she added.
After spending some more time with Bhoori, Naira left. Bhoori was still sleeping.
A few days later Naira went to meet Bhoori. Bhoori looked better she was playing with some puppies. Naira did not want to disturb Bhoori though, so she saw her from the gate and then decided to leave. She was about to enter the car when she heard Bhoori barking, she was standing at the gate. They ran towards each other and hugged. It was difficult parting away from Bhoori but this time Naira knew this was the best, best for Bhoori.