Like so much of life in the Serbian capital, owning and walking a dog in Belgrade can be a quirky and unique experience. Here are just a few of the things that make cohabitation with a pooch an awesome experience!
1. You feel like a pioneer
You know exactly what pioneers around the world would have felt like when doing something for the first time. Because you are sometimes, not always, greeted by looks of utter astonishment that you as a member of the human race have continued the tradition your ancestors have upheld for at least the last 10,000 years and are cohabiting with a domestic animal.
2. It sometimes feels like a membership to an exclusive club
Dog owners (OK, some dog owners) will exchange knowing looks when coming across one another in the street, park or wherever your pooch has taken you that day.
3. You find out that motherhood and having a dog are mutually exclusive
You are reminded by elderly Belgraders, and sometimes the younger ones too, that you as a woman should be out walking children, not dogs. Though they fail to specify whether the children should be yours, theirs, the neighbours’…
4. Dog-friendliness glee
Upon discovering that a business is pet-friendly, you are washed over by a range of emotions, from surprise through unforeseen joy to unalloyed delight. You will continue coming back to the place and have a completely biased view of all their products and services.
Conveniences, such as dog parks, doggy bag posts and waste litter cans, aimed exclusively at dogs and their owners, incites disbelief but also a hope that things around the city are improving. You also feel honoured that your pooch and you have been given the time of day by the city authorities.
6. Small joys
A common question presented to dog-owners by non-dog-owners and, weirdly, by some of the former group is: ‘’Where do you keep it?’’ – meaning the dog. In my younger years, I would have stood dumbfounded at my interlocutor’s lack of good manners and excessive nosiness but now I eagerly await the question and readily answer: ‘’I stuff it under a chair or the bed’’ and turn on my heel with a victorious grin, before the other party has had a chance to recuperate. Yes, small things make me happy. And if you can think of a better quip, please tell me in the comments below – when I get a chance to test it out, I will hang around for a second or two longer so I can report back on the reaction it got.
7. Verde que te quiero verde
Parks, parks, greenery, city forests, little green squares, trees, trees, bushes and more trees. If you haven’t noticed how truly, wonderfully green and lush Belgrade is, get a dog and it will show you around.
Photo courtesy of Belgradog
All of these pooch-snaps were taken on the streets of Belgrade by Belgradog – with the express permission of their human chaperones. For more doggy photos, like Belgradog on facebook or follow @Belgradog on Instagram.