Sooraj Pancholi loves pets (dogs especially). At one time, he used to own 14 dogs. Here Sooraj shares about this special bonding woth his pets.
Newcomer Sooraj Pancholi has a soft corner for animals, is a dog lover, and owns not just two or three dogs but has as many as seven dogs (he had 14 at one point of time).
He says his bungalow has “more dogs than people”.
Sooraj says he loves animals and would love to open a charity for animals if he could. Here’s Sooraj sharing his thoughts on animals.
Question: You’re a lover of animals…
Sooraj: Oh, absolutely! I love animals and am attached to all types of animals. I had chickens, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits, birds and turtles. So my bungalow is like a small zoo. I had 14 dogs at that point in the bungalow and got really attached to all of them. The first dog I ever had was called Bullet. They were all in my Juhu house and we always had more dogs than people staying in the house.
Question: How many pets do you have at the moment?
Sooraj: I have seven dogs right now. There’s Fausto (my seven-year-old Husky), there’s Pepper (my nine-year-old Chihuahua). I have four stray dogs. I call them Heaven, Kaya, Mishka and Krishi — all around eight or nine months old except Krishi, who’s a little older. I had the other animals when I was young. It gets tough to take care of them and the dogs are what I can have right now. I still have fishes but I don’t have turtles because it’s not legal to have them now. The day I have a farmhouse, I will keep everything again because I cannot keep all of them at home.
— Sooraj Pancholi (@soorajpancholi9) November 7, 2016
Question: Your first pet was…
Sooraj: My first pet was actually a sheep. Her name was Jaanu. I think I was four years old when I was gifted a lamb. My father was shooting somewhere in the mountains and then he saw a lamb and brought it back for me. After that, we got our first dog Bullet and ever since, we have had dogs and dogs and more dogs in the house.
Question: How much time do you spend with your pets when at home?
Sooraj: Whenever I am home, I try making time for them. In the evening, even if I have half an hour in hand, I try to be with them as much as I can. But on Sundays, when I’m home, I spend time with my pets. There are people who take care of them when I’m not around.
Question: Do you feed them or take them out for a stroll?
Sooraj: Yes, that I do. But I don’t get as much time as I used to get before. When I was completely free, I used to get a lot of time, but now I am either busy with shoots or events. I take them out to the beach sometimes because I live very close to the beach. But nowadays, when I get time, I usually spend it in the bungalow.
Question: The last time you took them out was..
Sooraj: Last Sunday, I took them to the beach in the evening. But it’s a rare thing because mostly, I have my trainings in the evening so I can rarely make it now.
— WorldForAll (@worldforall) November 4, 2016
Question: How has having pets changed you?
Sooraj: When you have a puppy or a dog in the house, it’s as good as taking care of a baby. It makes you more caring and responsible towards them. You know a lot of other things because you have to know them to keep them fit. In a way, it does make you like a parent because you have to take care of the dogs, take it to the doctor and when something bad happens, you feel as bad as losing a family member. But as much as I can do for my dogs, and as much as I can keep them happy, I try my best.
Question: Do you take them to the vet?
Sooraj: I personally take them to the vet. I do that on a regular basis because I feel that’s very important. If you have a dog at home, you have to get regular check-ups done.
Question: What motivated you to adopt stray dogs at home?
Sooraj: I was leaving for my shoots and one morning, I get down, see these four puppies next to where they put the trash. I got all four home and we were looking for a house for them. But by the time we actually found a house, I got attached to them and had named all of them. I kept all four. One of them had an infection in the stomach and I lost him three months ago. Now I have three of them playing around in my bungalow.
Question: There are so many NGOs who help retrieve stray dogs or other captive dogs in serious conditions and offer them for adoption…
Sooraj: Yes, I have seen a lot of such videos, especially the ones PETA does. I think it’s a great initiative.
— Sooraj Pancholi (@soorajpancholi9) August 31, 2016
Question: Do you think India should also start doing it?
Sooraj: It definitely should be a top priority now. Firstly, India should have good hospitals for animals. I have been through it with all my dogs. Whenever my dogs fall really sick or they need surgery, it takes almost two days to find a surgeon to operate the dog. We need hospitals for all kind of animals. The rest comes a lot later.
Question: Would you love to do a campaign for animals?
Sooraj: I really want to do something for animals. If I ever do charity, I will do it for animals. In fact, if I do well in my career, I would like to open a small hospital for dogs in and around Mumbai.
Question: Are your family members attached to your dogs?
Sooraj: Pepper stays in their house. They are very attached to all the dogs, for sure.
Question: If you were an animal, which animal would you be?
Sooraj: I am more like a horse, maybe. But if you ask me what my favourite animal is, I would say panther. I love the way panthers look. They are always alert, quick, strong and they look fierce. They are beautiful animals.
Question: Do you also love jungle safaris?
Sooraj: If I get an opportunity, I would jump at it. But I haven’t had the chance to be on one yet.
— PETA India (@PetaIndia) December 14, 2016