My Pet Story: Lessons I learnt from my dog

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On March 8, 2008, my late father, who was Vice President of Parti Gerakan Malaysia, was fighting with his team in a neighborhood in Seremban when someone noticed a small puppy in a drain. She looked abandoned. They asked the neighborhood if it belonged to anyone, but no one knew who it belonged to.

As it was getting late in the day, he decided to bring the puppy home so we could adopt him. It was a surprise as we already had four dogs at the time, but I was still very happy to have an extra family member. She was named Scrappy after the nephew of (cartoon character) Scooby-Doo.

Scrappy was a fun-loving dog who was always ready for a good time. She was optimistic and loved being around. When my mother was doing the gardening, Scrappy would follow her through the garden. She looked forward to her occasional evening walks in the neighborhood and wouldn’t want to come back until she had explored every corner she wanted.

We got her some toys, and her favorite was a squeaky pink bone. She also enjoyed playing with her toys as she got older and was reluctant to share them with the other dogs. It became a routine to massage her and the other dogs after dinner.

Although we did not know their actual date of birth, we “celebrated” all of our dogs’ birthdays on March 8th. We ordered a cake from my aunt and bought her KFC.

Unfortunately, her health began to deteriorate in July 2019. I was worried and took her to the vet when she started coughing. She had an X-ray and the vet told me it didn’t show anything abnormal.

She was given antibiotics and other drugs. She recovered a few days later.

In September of that year she fell ill again and this time it was much worse. The vet informed me that she had late stage lung cancer and that treatment was not possible at that time.

I took her home where she spent her final days. She passed away in early October 2019.

Scrappy taught me a lot. She made it clear to me that it is important to also enjoy the little moments in life. She taught me the importance of optimism and not giving up until the end. Even when she was sick, she wouldn’t let that stop her from enjoying what she could during this time. She used every opportunity to explore new things and was curious.

I still miss her, but I’m sure she is much better now. We still miss her very much.