LESSONS FROM HELMET-WEARING DOGS
Parents in America are legally required to strap children in safety seats until they’re old enough to buckle themselves safely. Dogs, in contrast, can sit freely inside a car without any type of harness. It’s quite common to spot a small dog sitting on a driver’s lap or a big dog sticking its head out of the window.
Dogs in India also receive scant protection while traveling, but the exceptions can be quite glaring, as well as amusing. In recent months, a photo of a helmet-wearing dog in Delhi and a video of a helmet-wearing dog in Chennai have gone viral on social media. Both dogs were sitting behind their owners on motorcycles, though the Chennai dog looked more awkward, with its front paws on its owner’s shoulders, while the Delhi dog looked like it routinely travels on a two-wheeler.
While many on social media marveled at the sight of dogs wearing helmets, others asserted that the drivers were putting their pets at risk by forcing them to balance themselves precariously on motorcycles.
“He’s endangering the poor animal’s life,” a man named Alfa Shenoy tweeted in response to the Chennai video. Responded a man named Amitabh Kishore, “More than securing his pet, he wants to give message to other careless humans.”
If Kishore is right, the message seems to be this: if a dog can wear a helmet, shouldn’t you be smart enough to do the same?
Compiled and partly written by Indian humorist MELVIN DURAI, author of the novel Bala Takes the Plunge.
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