Buddy the Sushi lover

Every second night, in front of 300 Mila’s kitchen in Lecce, sits a dog named Buddy. Without a leash, because he won’t move until the first Sushi dishes come out around 8pm. And he knows too well that some chef will feel sorry for him and pass him some. “This is how our labrador grew up” says Matteo, 22, son of the owner’s family, born in Lecce, now studying in London. The dog once was a birthday present, ten years ago. “One of the most beautiful moments in my entire life”, remembers Matteo, and how “…we spoiled him from the beginning. But Buddy repays us with pure love.”

Ciao Matteo, would you like to tell us about you and your labrador Buddy?
We definitely have a special relationship, I would almost describe it as love and hate. Hate because he obviously doesn’t understand that when I leave for London for university, I’m not leaving him on purpose but I’m going away to study. It’s nothing personal! Yet, he is sad every time I go. Love because when I come back, after a day or two, we go back to where we were before I left.

What are your favourite things to do together?
I love taking him in the car, he loves coming with me, we’d put music on along the way and we would find a beach somewhere. We enjoy the journey almost as much as our walk by the sea. Along the way we both find our peace of mind.

How do you understand each other?
Our language is made of both gestures and looks. We don’t need to talk, we just look into each other’s eyes and we know what we want from each other. Small gestures, maybe a finger up when needed, nothing else. Buddy would obviously do anything for a piece of sausage. But it’s not always necessary. If we have to go, I just say “Buddy one, Buddy, two, Buddy…? – and he always comes running.

If Buddy were a person? Who would he be?
If he were a person he would definitely be my best friend. Maybe even more: a brother. I never had one, but Buddy has always been a part of our family, he has always made me feel loved. And he is someone who has always appreciated me for who I was, with all my defects and strengths.

Anything he did that was really funny?
Well, once he ate the birthday cake that my parents had made me for my 15th birthday. It was placed on the kitchen table, we had left the room for a moment and when we came back the cake was gone. Eaten, slice by slice… We looked into each others eyes and started laughing helplessly, but there was nothing left to do. The cake was gone. I will never forget that moment! So funny.

How would you describe Buddy’s life?
Buddy is 100% part of the family. 110%! He sleeps on the bed, sleeps on the couch, sleeps everywhere. And he is always with us. He even eats sushi at the restaurant, just to make you understand…

Any suggestions for future dog lovers?
I would say a dog changes your life. We can love many different dogs in our lives. But a dog will give you 100% of its love because it will be with you for its entire life. We ARE their entire life. No person will ever be able to give you the affection that a dog gives you.

@300mila_ , Lecce