Meet Champ, old but gold

Meet Champ, 12 years old but a happy soul.

Champ is a mix-breed, rapidly approaching his golden years as his whitening fur indicates.

He came into the lives of Noel Wong and his family some twelve years ago one fateful morning.

It was a school day and while Noel was still soundly asleep, his sister was preparing to go to school.

She was out in the house porch when she spotted something sticking out of a shoe and wriggling.

She screamed, thinking it was a snake. His mother thought it was a rat – both terrifying prospects as far as they were concerned.

A loyal member of the Wong household, Champ was abandoned as a tiny tot by his mother.

Upon closer inspection, the snake-rat turned out to be the tail of a young puppy. At the time, he was small enough to fit in the palm of a hand and was rather naked.

Noel and his sister had long wanted a pet dog, and while his mom was apprehensive at first, she relented.

After all, the puppy’s mother and litter were nowhere to be seen.

So, Noel’s mom placed the little critter in a laundry basket and fed him milk and sausages. He would be named Champ that day.

Nothing makes Champ happier these days than getting a good neck scratch.

As a youngster, he had a stubborn streak.

It was a constant battle of wills keeping him within the house compound and he would make a dash for it as soon as the gates opened.

He was rebellious to the core and would wear a defiant look whenever Noel or his mom and sister chased after him to bring him home.

As he reached adulthood, he figured his escapades were too tiring and had lost its thrill. So he stopped cold turkey.

He’s now more likely to be seen laying lazily around the house compound than attempting his next great escape.

He eats essentially everything in sight, but has a fondness for bones and rice with eggs. Strangely enough, he eats kibble begrudgingly.

Any stranger who drops by the house must submit to a full sniffing by Champ before they can come inside.

He is terrified of lightning storms and loud noises and cowers underneath the cars parked in the compound when a storm rages outside.

He is also deathly afraid of heights, and has a bad habit of peeing on the veterinarian’s examination table whenever he is hoisted up for a check-up.

When he was younger, he was capable of jumping through hoops to get treats – literally – but he has grown somewhat lazy as an older dog and rather just walk around the hoop to get at them.

Stern instructions don’t work on him either thus no one’s getting any tricks out of him these days.

These days, Champ prefers spending his days lazing outside as he watches the world go by.

He appears to be fierce but his is a classic case of his bark being worse than his bite.

As soon as he gives any stranger who comes to the house the once over, he saunters off in the opposite direction, happy in the conviction that he has done his duty and has better ways to spend his day.

If he is not provided an opportunity to sniff the life out of the stranger, he will remain suspicious throughout their presence so the family has learnt to let Champ call the shots.

After all, he’s the old guard of the house; not particularly useful as an actual guard, but a member of the family nonetheless.

Sure, he sleeps a lot nowadays, but he has earned his rest from all that running about he did when he was younger.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR PET: FMT Lifestyle readers are invited to send in pictures (landscape format) and a short video (if any) of their furry, scaly or feathery friends to [email protected]. Don’t forget to include details like your pet’s name, age, breed and a short story about them.