Animal lovers, Amith Sivashanmugam and his family have opened their house to stray dogs. Vipasha Sinha visits to their house to be welcomed by some of the wonderful pets.
I almost thought I had entered an animal shelter when I went to visit Amith Sivashanmugam at his home. But, then you can’t blame me, for I was taken in by the well-fed streets dogs that were roaming freely inside his compound.
Amith was surrounded by pets right from his childhood. Most of them were animals that his parents had rescued from the streets and cared for as their own.
It taught him an important lesson in life — being compassionate towards animals. He carried on with their good work.
Amith not only worked closely with various animal welfare organisations in the city, but also organised free vaccine campaign for stray dogs when he was away in Kerala on work.
He has rescued several injured animals, got them treated and found them a home. “As a child I was taught to be kind to animals. So if any one of us find a stray dog hungry or injured, we immediately take it in. We treat it and find a home for it too. Often we end up having a deep bond with the animal and are unable to part from it. For instance, we had rescued a dog that accidentally fell into a well and lost his sight due to shock. We brought him home and treated him. We were heartbroken when he passed away recently,” says Amith, who at present has five dogs at their house in Arumbakkam.
He says: “We picked these mongrels from the streets as they were struggling to get enough to eat. We brought them home and fed them and now they are always inside our compound.”
He might not be a meat-eater himself, but Amit ensures that the mongrels in his street get good food everyday.
“Feeding dogs is a ritual in my family. My mom prepares dinner for them every day. We give them curd rice and chicken, which is especially brought for them. The cooking gets over by 9 or 10 p.m. and we go out and serve the food to the five dogs that live inside our compound and to dogs on our street,” says Amith.