He was born in Granada, or so we think. He wandered through the streets during his first year of life. He was abused and it was obvious. He showed clear signs of fear when someone approached him, especially if it was a man. They uploaded his picture on an Internet site, the Asociación Ladridos Vagabundos (Barking Wanderers Association (http://chuchos-gr.org/)). He was welcomed into a home under the auspices of this animal shelter that works so well and so diligently and kindly managed the adoption process. His name: Batuke. He came home one morning in December 2011.

The day we picked him up, he was trembling -stiff as a stone. If you came close, he would start growling. Even if we tried tactfully, however much tenderness and patience we invested, there was an impassable limit. He had been beaten very often, I do not doubt it. But we enjoyed it with patience, a slow approach of feed pellets given in hand, one at a time, the permission to take as much time as necessary to realize that his new home was not the street he was abused, and he opened up to us. Today, you see, he shows off in front of others and the world, full of confidence and affection. It’s a phenomenon.

We hold conversations from differing viewpoints, and we like pampering, too. He, with his head cocked and his honey-coloured eyes, seems to see beyond the surface. Sometimes he sleeps on my lap while I read, and hoarses a little. And he seems to dream about the bad times he has been through. But tenderness reassures him. I wake up every morning at six o’clock with his front paws drumming on my pillow, and he does not know what words like Saturday or Sunday mean. He, above all, is punctual. He continuously plays with his canine brothers, now residents at home for years, which have also welcome him with much love, and with my children and my partner, moving at the speed of light. He is unattainable, and pure joy. It’s one in the family.

Let this post be a message of gratitude and appreciation to all those volunteers who give their time and resources to accommodate so many animals abandoned by the unconscious and the caprice, and why not say it, the wickedness of man.

They give us so much, we could learn a lot from them. We are not aware of its value.

Please, before buying or adopting a dog, think about the consequences. It is not a toy. They are extremely intelligent and sensitive beings who would, without hesitation, give their lives for those they love.

To err is human, to forgive… is canine. Let’s learn from them.

Kisses, hugs.



Alex Rovira