I wrote this post six years ago to remember a pet I loved so dearly. I lost him forever but his memory remains.
I felt sad after watching Marley and Me last Sunday. I couldn’t help but reminisce about the good old dog I have with Brownie, a mongrel given by a neighbor when I was 10.
Marley, a Labrador retriever, was the precocious but lovable dog in the self-titled movie along side actor Owen Wilson and Jennifer Anniston, who both played as newspaper reporter and columnist, respectively.
The blonde lab played a major role in John and Jenny Grogan’s adventure of marriage, career and family.
Incidentally, Marley and Me is based on the best-selling autobiographical book by columnist John Grogan.
So, in what part of the movie I can relate to?
There are two scenes in the movie that remind me of Brownie.
Brownie is an equally loyal dog. I remember him following me to school almost everyday. He would only stop tailing me when I reached the school gate.
I think the incident happened the same year when I lost him to peddlers.
My grandmother decided to sell Brownie after a near-confrontation with an irate neighbor. Brownie, who is an obedient dog, is blamed by the neighbor for allegedly destroying her plants after pursuing a rival dog.
One day, two men arrived to fetch Brownie. They forced the poor thing inside a cage full of other howling canines of different sizes. Brownie was whining and looking at me as if begging to be rescued.
I was a child and my plea to release him fell on deaf ears.
Hindi ko na maalala kung ilang gabi ko iniyakan ang pagkawala ng aso ko.
In the ending part of the movie, John was devastated to witness his dog slowly dying (euthanized) inside a vet clinic. I can relate to John’s loss in that scene.
Marley was given the proper burial and respect by the Grogans at the family estate. I never saw how Brownie died, but I could imagine how he was beaten to death by the ruthless peddlers. We could have cremated (if we can afford VA cremation) his body if it was retrieved.
After a few days, my uncle decided to search for Brownie somewhere in Binan or San Pedro, Laguna, where live dogs and dog meat are reportedly sold during those days. He came home empty-handed. He said that Brownie could be dead.
I still think about Brownie until now. My children have heard of the story a couple of times already. They are begging me to buy a Labrador pup even before they watch the movie. I have yet to grant their wish explaining to them the responsibility that goes with taking care of a dog. But I instill in them the value of having a pet, especially dogs, that they make a good and loyal companion even if they are already old.
Five years ago, my kids’ dream of having a pet dog was finally realized. Oreo is a source of joy to the family.