Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Dogs in Uganda

This morning as I was walking to work, I stopped a man to ask if I could take a picture of him with his dog. He agreed, but unfortunately my camera didn’t. It’s too bad, too, because the dog was unique in a couple of respects. First of all, the dog was on a leash. Second, he was a recognizable breed, a German shepherd.

Most dogs I’ve seen here in Uganda would fall under the general heading of “yellow.” Until today I had never seen a dog on a leash and only very, very rarely with anything resembling a collar. Most of the dogs I’ve seen have been sleeping. I let them lie. (The picture here is from the Acholi Quarters.) I hear them barking at night and finally get the notion of dogs howling at the moon.

One time, I went with Peter to visit a client who lives in her aunt’s house. When we came in the gate, we met a dog, yellow, long and narrow. “Oh, you’ve gotten so fat!” Peter said to the dog.

Up in Ntinda, there’s a pet shop—a GIANT pet shop, it says, for all of your training needs. It’s about the size of, oh, my office at Christ Church, I suppose, with a few bags of nondescript kibble in brown paper and a few other things. No toys, no t-shirts, no personalized dog dishes.

There are some puppies in my neighborhood. I generally see them rooting through the trash in the little grassy area on my way up to the Life in Africa offices and internet cafĂ©, flies often buzzing about their raggedy-looking ears. There used to be a lot more of them. I’m not sure I want to know.

No comments: