Why Indian Pariah Makes a Good Companion
It's Monday, noon time with scorching heat which can make you sweat just walking on the street. Sweat is trickling down rapidly to the chin, as I stroll fast to reach my car...Something amusing grips my attention!
Encountering Prince's Joyride with Raja
I see a young man sitting on a hand-driven tricycle under the shade of a peepal tree. I further look down and discover a brown stray dog, sharing his cushioned seat...
I couldn't help walking up to him with curiosity and he politely asked me, "Will you be interested in buying two packs of incense sticks for 10 Rupee?" I was moved by his politeness and nodded, giving him the money in exchange.
"What is your name and is this a stray dog?" I questioned.
"I am Prince and yes, he is a stray dog and I fondly call him Raja, who is my only family. My family gradually abandoned me, when I met with an accident a few years back losing both my legs, and since then I adopted Raja and gave him my name!" was his instant reply.
A cliche that says, a dog is a man's best friend but often this bond and attachment can go way beyond. Just the presence of Raja in Prince's life makes him feel loved, secured and protected at the same time.
Stray Dogs Hungry for Love & Affection
Bringing home a new family member calls for proving an apt environment, as the rules of adoption hold true here as well. One has to make certain that there is an overlap in the personality of the puppy and the family.
Since these are street dogs, they are more used to open spaces and always high on energy therefore demanding frequent walks. The Indian Pariah is one such breed, that likes being outdoors as they are used to free space and freedom. Confining them to one place might depress them.
Besides, most of these dogs have faced a bad history hence they need a loving home and affectionate master. In addition they might also be suffering from some physical deformities or skin problems; it is always better to get them checked, sterilised and vaccinated by a specialist.
'Be Desi and Adopt Desi'
As mentioned earlier, the morphology of Indian stray dogs is best suited to Indian climatic changes, hence they adapt well while sustaining to the weather unlike pedigree dogs. Since they have less fur on the skin they also shed less hair.
Archana Rao, who is an avid animal lover and has over 15 dogs in her care in Bengaluru at present says, "We reside in a country, where everything foreign amuses us to the extent of choosing a 'foreign pet' becoming a part of our family, just because it is exotic and beautiful in appearance. What we tend to overlook is the fact that the local or the desi breed is best adapted to our climate."
There are many who want to raise their voice for adopting Indian breeds and they all have a different outlook, approach and points to share about the Indian Pariah.
One such person is Kanica Rawat, who works with a Fortune 500 firm as a Senior Quality Analyst in Bengaluru. And she says, "Indian street dogs apart from being a perfect fit for our temperate climate are also extremely loyal and intelligent. Furthermore, street dogs are more flexible as the breeding is done in a jumbled way unlike the pure breeds that are often prone to genetically related health problems."
Usha Madan, a Bangalore based teacher who participates in many animal rescue operations with NGOs such as Karma for Tuffy says of the Indian breed, "They do not demand as much maintenance or grooming like shampooing, brushing, special dog food and daily tonics as pedigree dogs. Moreover, we should not stereotype the street dogs as dirty or unhygienic as they come from the street, they can be trained as properly and pick toilet training habits like any other pedigree dog. Rather they can even be fed the daily food like rice, pulse, boiled egg, chicken and boiled vegetables to maintain themselves."
Changing Trends & Mindsets
Today there is a change in trend and these street dogs have become more acceptable in our Indian homes. With constant awareness and welfare concerns, families have mellowed their attitudes and rather welcoming these desi locals into their homes as family members.
This change in the attitude and beliefs can be attributed to many people and organisations such as NGO and even the youngsters, who are supporting the cause via social networking sites. This is boosting up the figures of adopted Indian street dogs monthly.
To conclude, the companionship of the Indian Pariah, looking at the climatic conditions and other aspects, I think Indians should always prefer desi over foreign breeds. These Indian dogs are definitely better suited than pedigree dogs, and outrank them on many criteria.
We should respect and give importance to our desi members or the 'locals' in general. If you treat them at par, and as affectionately as the imported breeds, then all doubts will be cleared that indeed the Indian Pariah is the best!
By Rohan Rawat
Rohan Rawat is an avid animal lover, whose organisation 'Karma for Tuffy' operates in Bangalore, Delhi, Noida and Gurgaon. 'Karma for Tuffy' is a highly active & alert animal rescue group that attends to distress calls of animals and birds from nook and corners of cities; and often at odd times. They also organise awareness events for promoting animal care, stray adoption, protesting against animal cruelty and so on. Rohan can be reached at: email@example.com
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