It’s a dog’s life
The sights and sounds of Kathmandu assault the senses in every direction with colour, smells and chaos. Indeed when you arrive for the first time, there is so much to absorb, that you would be forgiven for not noticing just how many dogs wander the streets of this fascinating place. However your first night will leave you in no doubt. There is nothing that could prepare you for the wild, unrelenting howls that fill the streets throughout the dark hours. Many a night’s sleep has been broken by the ghoulish wailing of the neighbourhood mutts. So be warned – bring earplugs!
The dogs come in all shapes and sizes. These days they are on the whole well looked after. There is a dog welfare organisation that will lift a very ill dog off the streets, treat it and return it to where they found it. There are several vets around now, indicating that people do try to care properly for them. We have noticed a big improvement in dog welfare since being here 12 years ago.
During the day the dogs take it easy, sleeping off the night’s activity in the warm sunlight.
These days it is cold ( -2c degrees at night and 16c during the day. The Kathmandu dogs, along with their owners are wrapping up and waiting for the sun to return!
There are also lots of puppies galloping down the streets. We have seen one get killed by traffic and have had several desperate offers to take a new pup from overwhelmed owners. We have done well to resist as they can be so cute. Our kids appear desperate at times to take one home and have already been sent packing with a little white one that they “rescued”.
During the Christmas holidays it happened again. Erin appeared back from walking the landlord’s dog, with the above little bundle. He was named (Dakota), fed, washed and given an orange blanket before their father appeared home. Was it time to admit defeat?
For several days they enjoyed the new addition. However we had to face up to the fact that the landlord did not want another dog and would not be willing to look after it when we are not in Kathmandu. So we agreed that he should take the little puppy to his other house on the Terai to be looked after by the man who works for him there. The kids have been promised they can visit. The parents (not great dog lovers) are off the hook. Everything is back to normal and the landlord’s dog called “doggie” is the centre of attention once again!