My Little Sister and a Siberian Husky Named Spike
This entry's going to be a little bit different from my typical photography post but for those of you who know me, I've always been a huge dog lover since I was little and we've always had dogs around the house ever since I can remember (at one point we even had 12 dogs!). So I've always been a fan of taking pictures of them and also helping out our furry friends, as well as those organizations that are there for them in every imaginable way possible, such as the SPCA. When I came to Singapore I decided to become more involved and helped out with the dog walking and photography, shooting events for the SPCA as well.
But a couple years ago my sister decided to take it to the next level. She visited the SPCA one day and being curious, decided to hang out with one of the dogs there, a Siberian Husky by the name of Spike. Apparently he'd been given up by 2 families over a period of 4 years...that's right...2 families! According to the SPCA, he was left outside most of the time in the extremely hot and humid Singapore weather, and tied up most of the time as he was considered 'too active'. As you probably know, huskies are incredibly active dogs that need a lot of exercise and do best in cold climates due to their thick coats. Living most of his existence tied up, poor Spike didn't get the exercise and attention he needed.
I feel sad when I hear stories like this because I think oftentimes people taking in pets don't think about all the responsibilities that having a pet entails. Having a pet is a HUGE commitment and you need to be ready to have one and give it all the care it needs. You don't just decide to buy a dog one day 'just because' you feel like having a dog, then give it away when it's too much trouble. Unfortunately thousands of animals are put to sleep ever year by the SPCA because they don't have enough physical room at their facility to take care of every single one - and so only those that have the best chance of being adopted based on their health, age, and temperament are given a home at the shelter.
Spike was one of these lucky ones. When my sister first me him, he was sitting all alone in his cage by himself, emotionless. He didn't do a whole lot when she went into his cage to pet him, and just sat there with a sort of blank look in his ice blue eyes.
However, she could not stop thinking about him for some reason. After a week of much contemplation, she came back to the SPCA later to pick him up and take him home, thinking that if he was still there a week later then he was meant to go home with her.
It wasn't all easy though - as much as you have to get used to the dog, the dog has to get used to you too. The air conditioning was kept on to keep him cool, and he went to dog obedience school to become better socialized. Her daily routine also had to change in order to walk him more often to get him the exercise he needed. Over time he eventually became used to all of us and it was amazing to see him become a happy dog. That empty look in his eyes that he had at the SPCA is now gone and is full of life and energy. Over the past year he has become so full of energy and so affectionate towards everyone. I'm proud of my sister for giving Piko (Spike's new name) a second chance and a home where he is truly loved, taken care of, and part of a family.