Lesson 72 – The Stray Puppy

Laila was sleeping when she heard a soft whimpering sound outside her window. I wonder who is making that sound, she thought. She got out of bed and looked outside. She saw a small brown puppy sitting under the window.

“Amma,” Laila called. “There’s a puppy outside the bedroom window, and it’s crying.”

Laila and Amma went outside to take a look. They saw the cute, but very scared, puppy sitting on the grass next to Amma’s rose bushes in the garden.

“She looks hungry and cold,” said Amma. “Let’s give her something to eat.”

There was some dog food in the kitchen from the time when their dog, Raja, was still alive. Raja had been sick for a long time. The puppy ate the food and drank some water. She stopped whimpering and even waggedher tail.

Amma told Laila to see if the puppy had a collar that might tell them where she lived. But there was no collar.

“We can’t let her stay outside,” said Laila. Amma agreed, and they brought the puppy inside for the day.

“We need to make some posters and put them around the neighbourhood so the puppy’s owners can find her,” said Amma. They put up six posters near their house. Three days went by and no one called to claim the puppy.

Amma said to Laila, “I think the owners didn’t want the puppy and decided to let her go, hoping that someone would give her a home.”

“That’s terrible!” said Laila. She was angry and sad at the same time. “How can people do something so mean? Can we keep her if no one asks about her?”

“Let’s see what happens in the next few days,” said Amma.

Two weeks passed, and no one called about the puppy.

“I think we had better name this adorable puppy,” said Amma. “Any ideas?”

Laila thought for a while and then said, “Let’s name her Rosy.”

“Why Rosy?” asked Amma.

“When we first saw her, she was sitting by the rose bushes in the garden,” explained Laila.

“What a clever name,” said Amma. “Rosy it is.”

Amma and Laila went to the market and bought a collar, a leash, a puppy bed, and some toys for Rosy. Laila played with Rosy when she came home from school. She brushed her fur regularly to keep her clean. She took Rosy for walks in the park. Laila loved giving Rosy a bath because she splashed water everywhere.

“I know that the people who abandoned Rosy did a bad thing, but I’m glad she was left outside our house,” said Laila.

Amma and Laila had talked about getting another dog after Raja, but they didn’t expect to get a new pet this way.

“I’m glad too,” said Amma. “Rosy is a very loving dog and she brings us a lot of happiness.”

A) Vocabulary

Whimper (verb) – to cry with a low, moaning, broken sound; to make a series of low, feeble sounds expressive of fear, pain, or unhappiness
Wonder (verb) – to think about something; to desire to know something; to feel curious
Scared (adjective) – fearful; frightened; alarmed
Wag (verb) – to move from side to side, forward and backward, or up and down, especially rapidly and repeatedly; to move or cause to move rapidly to and fro
Neighbourhood (noun) – a district, area, or community within a town or city; the area surrounding a particular place, person, or object; the place or area where people live
Terrible (adjective) – extremely bad or serious or unpleasant; horrible; distressing; dreadful;
Adorable (adjective) – very attractive; inspiring great affection or delight; charming
Abandon (verb) – to leave completely and finally; todesert
Explain (verb) – to make an idea or situation clear to someone by describing it in more detail or by revealing relevant facts so that they understand it

B) Make sentences of your own with the words given below. The sentences must show that you understand the meaning of the word.


C) Read the story aloud. Pay close attention to the words in bold. Do you know how they are pronounced?

D) Discussion Points

  1. Why did Laila wake up?
  2. What did Laila see when she looked outside her window?
  3. What did Amma say when Laila and Amma went outside?
  4. What did they feed the puppy? Where did the food come from?
  5. Why did Amma ask Laila to see if the puppy was wearing a collar?
  6. Why did they put up posters around the neighbourhood?
  7. What did Amma decide to do after two weeks?
  8. What name did Laila choose for the puppy? What was the reason for this?
  9. What did Amma and Laila buy in the market?
  10. How did Laila take care of the puppy?
  11. Do you think Laila and Amma still missed Raja?

E) Written Exercise

Have you ever had a pet? If yes, write a short paragraph (4-5 sentences) about why you love your pet. If no, describe your favourite animal.

Audio courtesy Tara Kriplani: