At Shillong, Pushpita Chakravarty was always surrounded by pets. She is now beginning to feel at home in Chennai, says Vipasha Sinha
Back in her hometown in Shillong, Pushpita Chakravarty lived in a house that was overrun with pets. After she moved to Chennai in pursuit of higher studies and employment, that was one aspect of life in Shillong that she missed the most.
As if an angel had read her thoughts, she began to be visited by animals in mysterious ways. First, a baby squirrel invited itself to her hostel at Madras Christian College. And then, after she had barely moved to a house in Teynampet, three puppies were left on her doorstep. Recently, two homeless were at her gates begging to be adopted.
“I remember having a pet around from the time I began to walk It is difficult for me to find a childhood photo that does not have a a cat or dog in it,” says 25-year-old Pushpita, a communication professional.
However, things changed when she moved to Chennai to do her higher studies at MCC College. The hostel rules were strict and the students were not allowed to have pets on the premises. “I missed being around animals. So I joined the Blue Cross and volunteered with the organisation during the weekends,” says Pushpita. Somehow, it was not enough. She would feed the animals on the campus regularly and take them to the veterinarian whenever needed. Though there were no pets allowed at the hostel, she managed to keep a baby squirrel for three months in her room.
“A squirrel had managed to make a nest above our bathroom. One day, I heard squeaks from the bathroom. I knew it was a cry for help, but could not locate where it came from. When I had almost given up , I saw a tiny little thing stuck inside the commode from which it was to get out. I picked up the little bundle of life and wrapped it in a plastic bag. It was just three to four days old. I had to feed it with a dropper. I kept it in my room and fed it till it was fine and then left it free after a few days,” says Pushpita, who called that baby squirrel ‘Tickles’.
Having moved to a house in Teynampet, she now fosters mongrels and cats whenever she got a chance.
“Right now I have three adult dogs and two puppies living with me. Someone had left three puppies outside my house almost a year ago and I did not have the heart to leave them alone on the street. I brought them in and they are like my family away from home,” she says.
Those pups are now healthy and grown. Recently, someone left two puppies outside her house. “It is as if somebody is aware of my love for animals and he or she leaves them at my doorsteps to take care of them,” she says.
Pushpita, who volunteers with Chennai Adoption Drive, wants people to understand that Indian breeds deserve much care and love and people should bring them home instead of spending money on foreign breeds.