Monday, November 9, 2009

My film debut: 30-second version + Man speaks dog

Just in case you don't have a minute on your hands, below is a short edit of the movie Winter & I starred in. (If you do, why not watch the full thing?)

And since we're on the topic, there's another humorous video circulating the Internet - on why you can't just tell your canine friend not to screw around.

Man Talking Dog

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Big Thank-You Wag to my PR aides

My sharp doggy ears received word that our humble 1-minute film garnered a wide audience all the way from Guang Dong, China to Down Under. A wonderful French fellow named Vincent Didier posted it on his blog amidst all sorts of interesting stuff from all over the world. ETTF and Inspiration Room are another two sites to add me to their choice selections. And the marketing folks are on to it too, apparently! I wonder if my human companions have seen these:

ADOI magazine, which is apparently very popular with the ad people who made the commercial

Marketing Interactive, which keeps tabs on the latest in digital advertising - so I'm told

Vincent Didier's feature starring moi; he also did a short write-up on his opinion of it. Wish I understood French!

Me again on, which covers everything under, over & on the sun - hence the interesting tagline of 'Everywhere you want to be'.

One of the online hubs for the gathering of creative minds: the Inspiration Room

As if that's not enough,the film also hit Number 1 on Google search...

Wet, fuzzy kisses and furry cuddles to you all.
I remain: the ever-charming, snack-stealing


P.S Watch out for more news of my doggy dominion on and offline!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Before The Happy Ending : Part II

The below is a true account of my experience as an abandoned pet, of how I was reduced to a savage stray on the edge of death, and how the love of two human beings turned my fate around.

This is not here for the sake of being a sob story. Me, Duke the dog, do sob stories? I don't think so. But you have to know this - the world has to know this, if only so a few more abandoned strays have a voice. This is what you came here to know. This is my story.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Several times more we met: the kind human and the savage dog. I suppose this does not do anything at all for the image of the stray canine - feral, snarling beasts whose only redemption is a human being willing to sacrifice a few fingers. Whereas the truth is very different. It was a human being who had put me here. But it was also a human being who saved me.

Gradually I began to let him in. I would allow him to place the food and water in front of my nose; after a while I even began to reach eagerly for the provisions and lap them right up like a healthy hungry puppy. And then one day, while I was intensely and sloppily absorbed in my meal, he pulled me loose.

Clanggg. I felt the chains fall around me - and suddenly I was free. The mad dog in me resurfaced, but this time it was full of joy instead of anger. I was, pardon the pun, barking mad. I was out. I was free.

FREE! Without a second thought I bolted from my old prison and off, off into the open horizon. The air stung my open sores but I had no time to lick my wounds - I was free, unbound by horrid steel chains and starvation. I was a full-fledged stray out to conquer the streets. Here comes the hellhound! – full of pent-up rage and ready to rumble.

Of course, I found out just a few days later that life on the streets did NOT suit me.

Hell no.

What's there to like? Sure the thought of being a tough feral mutt who don't take shit is great (to a sheltered house dog anyway), but the reality is very different. Being a naturally affectionate creature, I soon found that desperate, starving sensation in my stomach returning. Not just my stomach; my whole body. All I wanted was to relive that vague memory of having been fed and bathed and groomed, and loved.

Then just when I was getting desperate enough to gnaw my own leg off to feed my stomach, I sniffed out a familiar scent. Confident, male, near middle-age. It was that of my saviour – the man I now call Richard – turning up like some blessed sign from providence.

And that was how my brief adventure as a failed stray came to an end.

My cloud of misery lifted, and I trotted after him like I was already his.

I knew I was going home.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Before The Happy Ending : Part I

The below is a true account of my experience as an abandoned pet, of how I was reduced to a savage stray on the edge of death, and how the love of two human beings turned my fate around.

This is not here for the sake of being a sob story. Me, Duke the dog, do sob stories? I don't think so. But you have to know this - the world has to know this, if only so a few more abandoned strays have a voice. This is my story. This is where it began.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

I don't know how long I'd been here. Bound to that bush by a tangled chain that was eating its way into my body. Sometimes I could smell the stink of rotting skin and a kind of hell that existed for me and me alone. I'd heard humans talk of heaven and hell. Animals don't believe in such a concept. I didn't either, but I was starting to.

Flashes of abusive kicks and punches ran through a doggy mind that tried to forget. We are not beasts that remember well. But some things are all too hard to let go of.

Perhaps they just needed something to be mad at. Something to use as a punching bag. Because of course dogs are trained not to fight their masters. Even a big fella like me is no match for a truly angry, irrational human being. And somehow all the madness endedup in me being not onlky abandoned but imprisoned in the cruelest of ways.

How long was it that I struggled and starved? From two days, to two weeks to...what, two years? Felt like forever. Cold, confused, going blind with frustration, and then finally despair. This was it. I was going to die beaten and bruised and wrapped in stinking maggots. Damned chain!! Why had I been put here?

What had I done to deserve this?

* * *

Daylight. Sweet smell of last night's rain. I wouldn't have bothered opening my eyes, except that something big was hovering over me - perhaps to kill me.

I wouldn't have minded, honestly.

Except pure instinct took over. I had to guard myself. No matter what.

Hmm - human, tall, a bit of beard. Smelt clean. Leave me alone, please, you don't know what it's like. Are you a bigger version of those kids who throw stones at anything furry that moves? Get the hell away.

Now he was prodding me - well, not quite. I didn't know what he was up to. But being chained up like a dangerous beast tends to make you behave like one. I leaped up and snapped at the hand.

Owww oww OWW. Chains pulling at me, biting deeper into the skin. Stupid, stupid! What the hell were you thinking of? But of course I wasn't thinking - at all. I was pissed; I was in pain; I would have tried to kill anything that touched me. Ahh, this is so far from the charming cad in the commercial and the pictures.

What was this? Water. Food, even. The tall human looked me in the eye with not a hint of disgust. A little fear, maybe. He wasn't stupid. But there was nothing in his manner that suggested he was going to beat the crap out of me. So I let him push the food and water till it was a few inches from my shivering snout.

I watched him warily till he began to back away. Once I was sure he wasn't going to try anything, I slowly prodded the food, licked it a little, then began to bite into it bit by bit. You have no idea how strange food feels in your mouth after you've been denied it so long. It felt so good, too, even though I dared not let myself enjoy it.

Perhaps tomorrow he would come back.

Or perhaps tomorrow I would die.

I didn't care. Finally the food and water was finished; I lay down, exhausted and not as starving as I had been, and went to sleep.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

My Big Film Debut

One glorious minute for me, one big leap for petkind. The commercial for SPCA Malaysia is up & running, so go watch ! And share it with your friends - and aunts, and grandparents, and anyone who is vaguely fond of animals. The rest of the work is mine; I'll do the charming, you just do the clicking.


p.s. Link here if you can't load the vid below:

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Tale of Charlie, an Unneutered Dog

Recently I bumped into an old friend, Charlie from the streets. Boy did he look roughed up - such a difference from the sleek plump thing he used to be back when he had a roof over his head. Here's a funny thing about Charlie: he LOVES to hump legs. Any leg, male or female, doesn't matter. (I believe he once banged a prosthetic.) His owner was a retired high-flying type who would sometimes have these hoity-toity folks over for what humans call a soi-ree. Basically it's where pinched-nose, perfume-drenched humans (boy those perfumes! they're hell on a dog's nose) get together and nibble on ridiculously tiny bits of food while whispering and laughing like someone's choking them with a leash.

Pic courtesy of this darling genius-slash-blogger

Now Charlie would usually be let loose around the house, being the gentle giant that he is. But occasionally - when the mood struck - he would trot up nicely to a lady, give her his droopy adorable grin...then promptly leap onto her dainty leg and bang his crotch against it like there was no tomorrow.

I'm sorry if this is all a bit graphic for you. But you've most likely seen it with your own eyes, no?

Anyway, it was all very amusing at first. But then more and more guests started complaining – that having a dog’s privates rub up against your silk stockings is not funny, that the mutt’s fur got everywhere, that Charlie was sometimes moody and unpredictable. This was indeed true: increasingly often, Charlie’s docile demeanour would switch to an aggressive one. Especially when there were female dogs within a 5-mile radius. Unable to figure out what was wrong with him, one fine day Charlie’s owner finally took him to the pound and left him there. A brief muttered goodbye and it was all over.

Confused and upset, Charlie (being the spirited thing he is) refused to stay in that pound. One evening he managed to break out and escape. And that’s how his life as a stray began.

This is close to what Charlie looked like when I met him last...
Photo courtesy of Carlos E. Bohórquez Nassar

Sad, isn’t it? What’s even sadder is that this happens to dogs all over the country. And it would have been so easy to avoid if only Charlie’s owner had neutered him.

See, neutered dogs (or spayed, if you’re a bitch) are more stable and less likely to get into trouble due to their sexual urges. We’ll still be the lusty buggers we were, but not to the point where we howl madly at and attempt to rape anything vaguely female. Or make it a mission to increase the stray population on the streets.

According to my owners, it also prevents ‘uterine infections’ and ‘testicular cancer’. I have no idea what those are but they sound like a bloody lot of pain.

You wouldn’t want your pet to go through that sort of pain, would you?

Anyway, last I heard Charlie is still roaming the streets – now with a harem of mangy bitches at his tail, half of whom will probably give him sexually transmitted disease at some point. But at least he’s still alive….

Bless you, Charlie. You were always faithful. Too bad I can’t say the same about your owner.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

From Stray Mutt to Spokesperson

When Richard and Chae Lin first adopted me from the shelter, I thought they merely wanted a soft furry welcome waiting to lap at their knees everyday. But after someone who thought me movie material approached them - well, they had bigger plans for me. Me, a former mangy stray, now the New Face of SPCA. So on a fine morning when I would rather have been sleeping in, I was pulled out of my soft bed and put in front of a camera. Hmmph. You know I'd never thought much of my looks; but I must say I look like a handsome cad on camera. Hugh Jackman, it's curtains for you.

Chae Lin prepping me for a long day ahead

One of the first scenes took place at a busy street. I can tell you I felt mighty grand when they brought traffic to a halt just for me. What a difference from the days cars actually tried to run me down! I can remember an old friend on the street being run over, and no one so much as stopped to help. Sad... Which is why I didn't whine too much when they made me repeat a simple running scene 15 times. I'm lucky to be here, really.

Lookit me run! Lookit me earn my biscuits. Ain't I a good doggy?

After all the running back and forth, the shoot ('shoot' - what a scary name! good thing it doesn't involve bullets and those ugly hulking dog hunters) came to a halt when it rained for 2 hours straight. By then I was decidedly hungry, a healthy appetite having devoured most of my doggy snacks. Seeing me beg with my puppy eyes (I may be getting old but I still know how to work 'em!), a young girl shared the Cheezels she was eating with me. Ahh, cheese. *happy yip*

Richard & me getting some much needed rest

--- OK, wait; where was I? Look, that cat was being a tease; I just HAD to chase it. Slimy lil thing. Right...the commercial shoot. I suppose now that I've had my fun, I really should tell you what the story is all about....

Or maybe I should just let you watch the thing. Be patient! The commercial is being launched in a few days' time. (That is all I know; dogs don't do dates. We depend on humans to keep track of those things.) Frankly, though, I can't wait to see it. Every dog and dog-lover in the nation is gonna love this. Possibly cat-lovers too. Yes, I'm that irresistible. You shoulda seen the shop owner's face in the one scene he shared with me! It's a wonder more of us aren't adopted. We ARE ever so loveable.
And to milk the most out of my 'loveability', perhaps I'll go persuade a nice rubdown out of my dear owners - or a snack even. And then settle down in the cosy little patch of sun over there for a nap.

If that cat doesn't come back, that is.

- - - -

LATEST edit: my YouTube page is up! I've just uploaded my first video - the Making of my debut appearance. More to come soon =P

All I Ever Wanted

Dragged out of the wet night streets and into the arms of a loving family. A dream that comes true for too few strays - but came true for me. Lucky fella, I am. *insert contented Woof here* As I am typing this with the aid of a loyal owner, a production house is putting together a film of me - that's right, me - starring in a commercial that will soon be aired on Television. I don't understand these humans and their fascination for this Television - but what's great is that I get to curl up beside them on the couch as they watch their moving pictures. (Occasionally they feed me chips, which is even greater.)

And look here - my first blog entry EVER. This InterNet thing is so much more fun than boring Television. *excited Woofs* My owners decided it would be a good idea to share my story with the world. Who knows, by the time my screen debut is on air, I may already be famous.

But the fame is not important to me. I prefer biscuits - fame is overrated. Really. You humans have no idea what it is to be full and happy and sleepy, and warm, and loved. This is my tale. And this is just the beginning. More to come soon....

In the meantime, good night! (It is not actually night now, but us dogs can curl up for a nap anytime; and this cushion is SO much softer than the street.) Please drop me a message, or a bone. I'll be back to lick your face in gratitude.

Cheers ~