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While browsing through the movie channels, I came across Marley and me. I faintly remembered watching this movie a while back when it had first released. I faintly remembered the cast and the storyline. I knew this movie about a dog would instantly appeal to the kids. So, I recorded this one. And the entire family watched it over the weekend. You know the funny part is that I had written a post about this movie way back in 2009 just a few months into blogging. I did not have Coco back then hence the co-relation that I did was on a very different level. I had a Yorkshire terrier named Brando way back in college who was a dysfunctional dog but we loved him to pieces. This movie connected with me because of that and because I had a toddler and a big kid back then.

Anyhow, the movie is great fun. It is comical and moving simultaneously. It is based on a real life story of a Labrador, Marley, who is a crazy, untrained dog who does wild things and his life journey with this family. Now, that I have a Labrador, Coco, who recently turned 4, I saw the movie in a different light.

My boy is a trained, well-behaved dog with his quirks and many idiosyncrasies. For starters, he is afraid of heights. So, when he climbs the stairs, he never walks close to the rails but closer to the wall. If you even put so much as a cloth near the rail then he will not climb the steps no matter if his life depended on it. He also has an inexhaustible supply of poop. We used to take him for regular walks but got sick of picking his poop 2-3 times over the route. Donโ€™t know where he keeps the reserve but he is always ready to poop in new territory. ๐Ÿ™‚

He talks. Oh yes, he has a repertoire of words and sounds in his doggy language that he uses effectively to communicate with us. His hmmm and other sounds are quite hilarious. And when he wants things done, he will continue to talk to you till you move your ass and listen to his demand. He is also fluent in Hindi and English and follows your conversation clearly.

An extremely loving guy, he is always around when you need a hug and gives you the utmost attention when you need a caring ear. I have long conversations with him when he looks into my eyes and sits still listening to every word I say. He understands and never judges. He is the perfect Counsellor. To show his empathy, he will put his head on your lap or come snuggle against you. No matter how short a time youโ€™ve been away from home, he will give you a rousing welcome. He does a funny Zulu dance and climbs all over you. He is one of the best reasons to come home, really!

Oh yes, and the chap sometimes just takes off from the house when he sees a stray dog or if he is in a mood to trouble us. The bugger will not come back on his own. The sons and I then have to scout the neighborhood and tempt him with treats to get him to head home. He has done this running act many times. Once, he even went inside another house whose inhabitants were shocked to find a full-grown Lab in their kitchen. Ah, the stories of his escapades. ๐Ÿ˜‰ But luckily, being a friendly boy, most people like him. He is especially good with kids. He has his own fan club of kids who come every evening to play with him. Of course, their parents do not let them keep a dog. You know, all kids want a puppy!

The guy loves his car rides. He sits in the hatchbackโ€™s boot, very pleased to see the world go by. Just like Marley in the movie, our Coco was the last of his motherโ€™s litter to be picked up. We later realized that he was perhaps rejected because he had a condition of undescended testicles. That later required neutering, surgery and painful recuperation. We didnโ€™t know and in hindsight, it doesn’t matter.

What Coco means to us cannot be put in words. He loves us immensely and totally. His pink nose, his wheat fur and his brooding golden eyes can make your heart melt. But, his heart and his unconditional love for us is what makes him so special.

I would like to end this post with the last lines from the movie that best sum it all.

A dog has no use for fancy cars, big homes, or designer clothes. A water log stick will do just fine. A dog doesn’t care if you’re rich or poor, clever or dull, smart or dumb. Give him your heart and he’ll give you his. How many people can you say that about? How many people can make you feel rare and pure and special? How many people can make you feel extraordinary?

42 Thoughts on “Our best pal!

  1. I had watched the movie long back and watched a bit again, the other day! It is our family’s favourite movie! As you say, we enjoy it more because we do relate to it like you. You must have read many of my posts about our Andy. He had come as a 40 day baby and from day one he was entertaining us. He was with us for 11 years. My younger son was 4 year old when he came home and he literally grew up with my two sons. My friends used to say all the three of your sons are great (chamaththu in Tamil).

    I loved the last lines you have posted here. Dogs are like angels. People who had not brought up a dog will not understand them.

    • Yes, Sandhya. I have read some of your posts. Just like you Coco is my youngest son. Indeed, those who don’t have a dog in their lives are missing something.

  2. I have to be honest. I never watched Marley and Me… I know the ending and I just cant bring myself to watch it… same for Hachiko too.
    I totally agree with your article and so much about it resonates with what we see even today in our house… including him developing his own language skills ๐Ÿ˜€
    At no point of time is he ever considered anything less than a family member in our house… we wouldn’t have it any other way.
    Dogs truly are the best example of selfless love.

    • Oh but you must, Roshan. They are amazing movies both. The sons and I tear up during the end but we don’t miss the larger message and celebration of the pet’s life. I nod my head at everything you say. They are no longer dogs but special family members.

  3. Yes, dogs are like that only I had them as best buddies growing up. But now due to time constraints we don’t, as keep a pet is also a big responsibility .

  4. Rachna, you are correct. The household pups become an important part of the family in no time. I can very much relate to your post. We had a labrador(she was soo dear) I After reading about Coco, I’ m reminded about our Elsa. I am immediately going to write about her. Please read about her when you find time.

  5. It’s amazing to have a dog as part of the family… the only beings who can actually shower us with unconditional love. They teach us much more than our experiences in 2 lifetimes…

    Please give Coco a big hug and kiss from my side ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. My father can relate to this post. He has 8 dogs last time I visited him. I feel their selfless love is unparalleled. I will catch the movie.

  7. Coco sounds like such an adorable kid! I am sure his escapades and antics will be family lore and brighten up many a get together when the kids leave home I had loved Marley and Me and one of Tom Hanks called Turner and Hooch. That one was equally good. Do watch it too.

  8. Labradors are extremely lovable dogs, with such expressive eyes. Good company too. Nice to see Coco.

  9. Having grown up with dogs and still a dog person, I totally identify with this post! I should also write a post about Zeb one day! I love that Coco also talks and listens to you!!
    And, a lovely pic of him…handsome chap!

  10. It is nice to read how happy and proud you are about your dog and his unstinted attachment to you.I am afraid of dogs particularly the stray ones and give a wide berth to them.I never enter a house that has dogs unless the owners assure they fully secured.

    • Yes, I am also terrified of some of the strays. But pet dogs, no. Of course, I always seek permission from the owner before petting their dog. Dogs also gravitate towards dog lovers. They can sense fear. And for those who don’t like dogs, we keep Coco away when they visit.

  11. Lovely post. Though I have never had pets, I am aware of the love and affection they have. A truly unconditional one. Enjoyed reading the post Rachna..

  12. A dog seems to be in my future considering my son’s love and adoration towards the animal. Enjoyed reading about Coco. He seems to be an adorable little chap.

    • Thanks, Shantala. A dog is a lot of responsibility but completely worth it. Kids love them immensely. In a way having a pet makes them more humane.

  13. Makes me remember my childhood Pet, Tinku, who would shower love on us. I still remember how as a child he would love me and I’d be scared,….Ur boy is soo cool and a dude:)

  14. Am not really fond of pets but I loved your post, Rachna ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. I absolutely love that movie, Rachna! We had a couple of dogs when I was a toddler – after that I’ve enjoyed my friends’ or neighbors’ dogs. My happiest moments were with my best friend’s three – who became super-glued to me each time I visited, which was like thrice a day sometimes. Such happy memories! Loved your post!

  16. I have never had pets, but I can totally see why you feel this beautiful rush of emotion when you write about Coco. This post clearly speaks of the deep bond of love you share with him, and he with you and your entire family!

  17. Aww! Coco is so adorable. Loved reading about him. One dysfunctional pet has put me off them, like forever. But we have 3 on our farm… 2 Dobermans and 1 Grey Mastiff. Both KG and AG love them to bits and have a big bagful of stories about them. They are so fiercely protective and do not allow even a stray animal come near the farm. Of course, they have attacked some new-comers and given us some panic attacks when we have to rush the victims to the hospital for medical aid. When both the boys meet them after a while (even few hours), the kind of attention they give and seek is simply amazing. Dogs are indeed the bestest pets to have around. Must check out Marley and Me. Have you seen Hachi? It is an amazing movie too!

    • Yes, a biting dog is a huge problem. I had a biting Yorkie and he made us so miserable yet we could not bear to give him away. Yes, I have seen Hatchi. That is a spectacular movie.

  18. Dogs are the best pals ever. I am sure he gives you many laughs and fun times together. Cute coco!

  19. Pets become like family members and convey so much with just their eyes. When we accused our Mom of loving Dingo more than us, she readily accepted it and said – he doesn’t argue and answer back like the two of you.

  20. I totally, completely, agree Rachna ! Nothing can ever replace the way dogs can make you feel. Unfortunately I cant have one in the apartment, but will wait for the day when I can one of my own !
    Good for you all and coco to have found each other !

  21. I’ve always wanted a dog. Since I’m hardly at home for a few hours in the evening, I dont want to bother mom with the training and taking care of the pet. So been putting it off for another time. Hope the right time comes soon ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I hope the right time comes soon for you. A dog requires companionship and time. Only if you can give both should you get one home. Of course, they give back much more than what we give them. ๐Ÿ™‚

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