The Hutch ads featuring the pug will never be forgotten. There was something about that little dog following the boy that tugged at the hearts of every Indian, young and old. The small boy was cute but I don’t particular remember his face but the pug with all its ugliness is imprinted in my brain. This is when I am not even much of a dog lover, so I guess that’s a lot to say about the impact of Cheeta, the dog who played the Hutch puppy.
Dogs have probably never had it so good as far as being in the news in concerned. A stray dog also had his five minutes of fame when he chose to go for a stroll on the formula one circuit. He managed to disrupt the practice session and created an embarrassing scene for India. But I guess it was just another Dog Day Afternoon for him.
Prior to the Oscars, among the frontrunners for the Best actor award — the most popular wasn’t Clooney or Pitt but Uggie, the Jack russell terrier. Too bad, he wasn’t eligible but he did manage to win the Palm Dog Award at the Cannes and is in line for a Pawscar. Truth is ‘The Artist’ was as much Uggie’s film as it was Jean Dujardin just like the Wizard of Oz would’ve not been what it was if not for Terry, the dog that played Toto. Unlike human actors these dogs usually do most of their stunts themselves, Terry even broke her foot during the filming of Wizard of Oz.
Move over media and entertainment space, dogs today are even dominating the political scene. Take the US for example-the democrats took digs at Mitt Romney for making special travelling arrangements for his family dog Seamus during their trip to Canada. Suddenly, Romney wasn’t a suitable candidate for presidency because he had let his dog travel solo in his kennel on top of a car. Policies be damned, the dogs ill-treatment was a bigger blow. The democrats did not have the last laugh but as it emerged that Obama had committed a more heinous crime- that of eating dog meat during his stay with his step-dad in Indonesia. Obama chose to poke fun over this issue at the annual White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner but Seamus and Bo, the first Dog, are now international news. Bo has seen the limelight right from the time he was taken in by the Obamas, in fact he probably got more coverage than the president’s daughters.
These were the dogs that have dazzled us but there are many that are more of a dilemma than a dazzle. Abroad they get sent to the pound while in our country, they find home on the streets, where they are looked upon as nothing but a nuisance. To think of it, the dog who interrupted the formula one practice session was one such vagabond as well. In a country where cattle, cars and sometimes even camels form part of day to day traffic, the dogs cannot really be blamed. The Hutch puppy was an exception; we live in a country where humans find it difficult to have one momentous day in their lives, so I guess the proverb, ‘Every dog has its day’, doesn’t apply to India- both literally and figuratively.