The one member of my family I am quite happy I didn’t bring to Germany with me is Tungo.
And in Uganda that can be a tricky position to hold, because in some families the family dog is of an indeterminate breed and enjoys no ceremony from the time it joins the family – which just happens – to the time it leaves – ditto. In these families the family dog gets called one of the three simplest names we have for dogs – Simba (Swahili for Lion), Police (because it guards you) and Dog (in any language possible) – and is generally looked after with the same amount of effort that goes into naming it.
Some other families have dogs to help herd the cows, but not in the sense that the Sheep dog does, rounding the sheep up in an organised fluffy rugby scrum; the cow dog is normally tolerated as it yelps and skips about around the perimetre of where the cows and their herdsman operate, and contributes absolutely nothing more to the process of herding cows than the nutrients it provides to the pasture.
Then there are dogs like Tungo.
Tungo is privileged compared to the others in her species back home.
A month after we got her the breeder paid an inspection visit and was loudly scandalised to find her curled up in a doggy bed inside the house – so we hid her hamper of toys just in case a melee ensued.
Thankfully, our maids are endeared to her and have never complained about having to follow strict dietary and grooming regulations (and one of them even drew some mild wrath when my wife discovered she was lacing Tungo’s meals with prime cut beef on top of the dog’s meat specially procured from a nearby supermarket!)
Tungo is living the life of the Lady, which is evident even to pedestrians who catch sight of her on her cushion in the car boot when we are driving places for the weekend.
So bringing her to Germany would have shattered her confidence to bits, I am sure, starting on the ride from the airport along which she would have definitely seen others of her species riding within the main cabin of the car rather than the boot.
She would have began drafting her rebellion manifesto on noticing that her fellow canines were strolling about the streets willy-nilly – some without leash or restraint – and an outbreak of violence would have occurred the day she saw a dog being let onto a bus or train, with the fighting intensifying after it came to her attention that other members of the free world were even allowed to enter into non-food shopping centres and to join their owners in restaurants.
No, I’m glad I didn’t bring her to Germany.
Also because unlike the rest of the family, who would have unquestionably whipped out their Ugandan passports at the airport on the way back, she would have had a good reason to pull against her leash.
After all, she’s a German Shepherd.