"Instead of spending the next weekend watching a movie or dining out, how about you come cuddle and play with some fur-balls?"
This is the pitch that a dog kennel in Hyderabad makes, as part of its “Play Day with Dogs” event that it has been organizing during weekends.
For the past one year, the “Happy Dogs Kennel” in Khanapur, has been organizing events, where one can visit the place and play with dogs and puppies, as a stress buster.
The kennel was first established in August 2014, with the intention to train and board dogs.
"A year ago, one of our customers walked in for a training handover class with some friends. While the program was only for 30 minutes, they spent almost three hours playing with other pets at the kennel. That is when I got the idea for this stress relief program," says J Anand, the founder and owner of the kennel.
Born and raised in Secunderabad, Anand lived in a joint family, where he grew really close to an Indian Parah Dog, which he nicknamed 'Puppy'.
"I had a great time with him till he was 13 years old," he says.
After completing his education, Anand worked in the banking sector, but is now dedicating all his time to the kennel.
"We only use positive reinforcement methods. We do not use shock chains or any harsh methods," he says, adding that the kennel presently has more than 30 dogs.
Though he faced some initial troubles while setting up the kennel, Anand says that they have done over 18 events till now, and the response is overwhelming.
"All our guests who visit, go back with a smile," he adds.
Anand is also worried about the recent incidents of violence against dogs in the city.
"The recent inhuman and cruel acts are a reflection of modern society's insensitivity towards animals. Children and adults alike should realize that animals are sentient beings. Children should be taught in schools by teachers and at home by parents to be kind to animals. The constant violence shown and glorified on television and in movies, is imprinting a violent attitude in children from a very young age." he says.
For now, the Kennel plans to hold many such events, and create awareness on training dogs.
"I want to help dog owners better take care of their dogs," Anand adds.
The price for a session is Rs 500 and the kennel can be contacted here.