If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. Mark Twain

Friday, January 14, 2011

A Dog With A Job

Blackie remembers his puppyhood in a canal and being brought to our factory where he has called home for 9 years.

At our factory he plays an important role, and because of him we have a unique corporate culture. Blackie feels that he is very much part of the team, being particularly proud and appreciated when all his colleagues would introduce him to new faces. He comes to work in the office with us in the day, and stands guard for the factory by night. In the mornings he would wait faithfully at the entrance to greet and see us to our desks. At meetings, he goes round to all participants to acknowledge every one of us. In the evenings after work, he would escort us by running alongside as we pull out of the driveway.

Over and above these small gestures, Blackie considers his main purpose as being the catalyst for happy vibes around the office, to be by our side, to comfort us from our work stress.

He has seven favourite colleagues in the office, whose desks he can freely roam about and laze at our feet. With each one of us, he has a special relationship. Among us, we have unspoken roles in bringing him his home cooked meals, showering him, and even jesting with him around the office with his favourite milk sticks. Of all, the person he likes best has to be the boss who would bend over to whisper encouragement into his ears for the job done well all these years.

Probably the only dog with the best of both worlds, Blackie is allowed a fulfilling corporate career with his human colleagues in the day and the life of a free dog in the night.

He is known to his doggie friends as the good Samaritan who would always fight for a good cause, perhaps because he knows that he would be treated and well taken care of should he be hurt in the process. Blackie has a notorious record with the vet, for the cuts and bruises inflicted for nosing around on his nights off duty.

We were in a happy state of mind when we were first invited by Fiona a couple of months back to pen the glorious life of our beloved Head of Security. Lynda and Fiona came into Blackie’s life when we approached the ladies for expert advice when we noticed Blackie behaving differently – he started to cough excessively and breathe heavily. The ladies went beyond their call of duty to take him to their regular vet, which has since taken good care of him.

Blackie was then diagnosed with an enlarged heart, a condition that must have been brewing but would not show until symptoms could be recognized clinically. In spite of which, we were sure that he could overcome this episode with consistent medication and reviews, just as well as he would emerge victorious from his regular street adventures.

In a matter of 3 months, Blackie has checked in and out of the vet for a fast deteriorating heart and we saw his demeanor reduce from a charismatic alpha male to becoming helpless and resigned. We are wrought by worry and heavy hearts about Blackie as we tell his life story.
Blackie is so well-loved that the staff at the factory even took him to the studio for his picture taken!
Sadness is apparent in his eyes as we take Blackie regularly to see the vet these days. As we keep vigil, we are conscious to keep our spirits up as well so as to encourage Blackie to go on. Blackie reciprocates by holding on for us, simply because being part of our team means the world to him, and he believes that he still has a job to do.

 We cannot thank Blackie enough for his unconditional friendship and companionship. He has touched many of us in more ways than one. We are fortunate to have Blackie as much as he is lucky to have found a good home with a family that cares for him. We are comforted that he has enjoyed a happy and contented life.

Blackie may not return to his pink of health, but we want him to be the fighter he has always been.

Written by Pey Pey, Blackie’s colleague.

Editor's Note :

Not all factory dogs are this fortunate. Blackie is possibly one in a thousand that is loved, appreciated and cherished by the people working at the factory.

There are dogs that live on the factory compounds and are considered a nuisance by the people there. These people kick the dogs, beat them with chains, ride their bicycles and try to run over the dogs or call in the authorities to have all the dogs removed. We have personally witnessed these acts of cruelty. So these dogs that live in the factory may just be there for the food scraps left behind by the workers, or for shelter from the sun and rain. They may not necessary have a care-giver feeding them or caring for them.

Care-givers could either be people working in the factory, or the security guards there. On our feeding rounds of the street animals, we have come across workers or guards who do feed the animals on their compounds, and with their measly earnings, buy food and share them with the strays. These are the people that Zeus targets to help; these are the people who do call us when the strays are injured or unwell and they help us catch the dogs and cats for sterilization too. These are the people who make the difference in the lives of the street animals, giving whatever little they can afford to give.

Stay tuned to our next blog post where we share more about Factory Dogs and how you can help us to help them.


  1. Blackie dont give up. You must be strong.

  2. It had been 3 years since my Pom died of heart attack at the age of 6 years. She was terrified of thunder and it was on one of those nites that she turned blue and passed away when rushed to the hospital. We have to admit that we were complacent in our care of her and since then, my 2 other dogs were well-guarded on their food intake as we did not want to relive the agony of losing them due to heart problem. So, Blackie, stay strong!

  3. the story may seem ordinary, but it's so heartwarming; very lucky factory dog who has lived his purposeful life to the fullest contentment, blackie stay strong and thank to those who have taken care of him all these years.

    if all other strays have this fortunate life...


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"He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion."- Unknown