AtoZChallenge MuffyTails

Kalu Maharaj and Us: Animal Welfare {Guest Post}

My Mommy loves chatting non-stop. Sometimes I wonder when she would keep her mouth shut so that I could go back to playing with my toys. All thanks to some fun twitter chats like the #SY5Chat she’s a bit held up on Tuesday nights. Shh… that’s when I chew on her stuff and tear off the newspapers. Anyway, this is how she became friends with Mehul who absolutely adores furry friends. Today she has invited him to grace this space. Time to get serious, you folks! I am so glad he decided to write on something really really important – Animal Welfare!

Over to you, Mehul…

I vividly reminisce Kalu Maharaj, Brownie and Billy making a dash to our building’s gate when I and Thakur would whistle out to them for feeding at night. Those were the days when neither Lalu, Goldy nor Misty Jr was around. The three would come scrambling down, wait with bated breath and gleaming eyes guessing what I had got for supper. I wouldn’t even know if anyone fed them in the day or not! Most probably not in this and every case out there. Back then I used to give milk and Parle G, but soon switched over to proper dog food once I learnt more about nutrition and the harmful effects of biscuits. And it also wasn’t a long while before I got all 3 of them their own bowls and ensured all food was always given either in these bowls OR on a paper. NOT on the bare ground. We took responsibility of all of them and took care like equals. A permanent water station was also installed in their building as well as mine.

Life trundled along and one major concern always used to be the premises they used to reside in. An old building replete with garbage and foliage in its verandah ensured Kalu Maharaj and Brownie always had ticks. In a metro like Mumbai, that building is a gross misfit. Careless, conservative and bickering residents added to the mix. Never gave a damn back then, now and the future. Then Lalu came along and all 4 were caught in territorial wars! Goldy was just a few months old then. I remember Kalu Maharaj and Lalu trying to woo her when she went in heat! Anyways, peace was made and the elder 3 were now restricted near the building premises. Also since they were growing old, they heard and saw less. And thus I began going into their building daily to feed.

Animal Welfare

The summer of ‘14 was when the moron ticks took a terrible toll on Kalu Maharaj. He had maggots in his ear(my first time with these slimy creatures) and we had to act quick. One of the many battles him and I emerged victorious from. Also, I was relatively new to animal welfare. So it was a learning curve in finding how animal welfare groups work, who are fellow volunteers in your area, are vets available, which medicines to give as the first point of action etc. We called a mobile vet but the job wasn’t great. At best, crude. Kalu Maharaj deserved better. Consulting a friend who runs a kennel in his building, got him to the BSPCA(Bombay Society Of Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals). Surprisingly, the ONLY animal hospital in India’s financial capital! Busted as many maggots we could, dressed him up and kept him there for a week before getting him back, fully recovered. BSPCA is notorious and you may have even heard that once you take your animal there, there’s no coming back. Along with Kalu Maharaj, I busted that notion. The indelible stench of maggot wounds was imprinted in my brain forever!

More attacks followed. Surrendering wasn’t in our blood. Kalu Maharaj cut through them with his sharp blades of herculean willpower and always came out on top. So much so that he even made the death look like a puppet in his hands!

Kalu Maharaj is the metaphor for the countless munchkins out there on our roads. For them, we are God. When you find any in distress, don’t rely on anyone. You are the one destined to ensure it gets help the fastest. Think of it as an opportunity in doing your bit for the planet. Give as much as you can and while at it, build knowledge about the same. Because in the end, its a win-win for all of us. Coming to think of it now, having seen, read and personally experienced umpteen experiences of residents or societies opposing animal feeding, trashing dead bodies in garbage, not bothering to pay medical attention when they see the poor things suffering etc, it’s no doubt a funny world we live in.

I fondly recollected more stories about him as I wrote this piece. Give me a shout if you want me to write them. One such tale was this one. Many of you will remember.

Kalu Maharaj isn’t gone. He lives on amongst all of us. And I hope wherever he is, if he’s reading this, must be vividly remembering us. An ode to the learning’s he left behind.

Animal welfare

A paw5 to the clouds.
With a little gleam in the eyes.
A humble bow and gratitude to Shalini for giving me this opportunity and considering me worthy. A big hug to her and paw five to Muffy. 😀

Author’s Note: 

Mehul Gohil was born and brought up in Bombay. Graduated in Geography, he’s been in the media industry all along. Started off with photography. He is a food lover, ardent traveler, good design nut and also loves tech, animals, movies & anything on wheels! He is a registered resident feeder & care taker for all furry friends on his road in VileParle(e). And a proud parent to Goldy & Misty Jr. Current mission is to work with Chris Nolan and do a round the world trip on rails and motorbike. Community building & connecting people is his forte and is right now running Synergy 5. He also hosts a kickass tweet chat called the #SY5Chat every Tuesday. If you wanna make some great videos & get going on social media/digital hit him up. Always a tweet away. And geared up to do more guest posts. My earlier guest post for Eccentrips.


That’s all for now! Don’t forget to drop in tomorrow because…

This April I am taking over Mamma’s blog to share my pawsome puppy tales with you. You can expect helpful information, fun and interesting articles topped with a dollop of adorable pictures and videos of mine. I will also be calling some friends over. I hope you’ll join me on this journey for I promise to shower you with unconditional love and deliver a positive dose of dog everyday, this April.

Meanwhile, I also hang out on Instagram. Do follow me there.


Find all the A to Z 2018 posts here.

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