About Me

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Mumbai, India
I'm a landrace dog fancier, birder and amateur arachnologist. I'm also a wildlife conservationist working in the tiger reserves of central India with Satpuda Foundation. Founder of the INDog Project (www.indog.co.in) and the INDog Club. I worked with urban free-ranging dogs of Mumbai for 14 years.

This blog is for aboriginal breed enthusiasts. It is part of the INDog Project www.indog.co.in. Only INDogs (Indian Pariah) and INDog-mix mongrels are featured here. The two are NOT the same, do please read the text on the right to understand the difference. Our aim: to create awareness about the primitive natural breed called the Indian Pariah Dog/INDog.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Radha revisited

Here's an update on lovely Radha, from her human Connie Hills! If you've followed this blog for a while, you may have read her earlier posts Radha and Radha eight months later.

Our INDog-mix Radha, from Chennai, India, came to live with us in San Francisco four years ago. When I met her, it was love at first sight. That sweet face with big doe eyes melted my heart. She walked slowly due to her funny feet - which suited my pace just fine.

At home, she was initially timid - stayed on her cozy bed round the clock - unless it was time for walks or food. She rarely drank water. Outside, she was reactive with other dogs, especially those off leash. She bristled at cars passing by, motorcycles, trucks, even pedestrians. We stopped walking her in the neighbourhood, and instead drove her to the park, or the lake - where there are fewer distractions. At our cabin in the mountains, she enjoyed the quiet of the tall trees.

Photos below: Radha in the mountains

In the last four years, Radha has opened like a rose. She is now interactive with us at home. In the morning she howls 'good morning,' enjoys pets and back-scratches. She drinks water day/night. 

She comes to the kitchen when I prepare her food. When I set her food down she does a 'two-step twirl' - leads with two front feet, twists her torso, jumps behind herself, then jumps clockwise back to the front. At walk-time, she howls, (we sing), she howls more. And at the end of the day, when I come home from work, she jumps off her bed, greets me in song. She sleeps on our bed, sandwiched between us.

We now walk her in the neighbourhood on leash. Car, truck, motorbike noises don't affect her. She obeys the 'heel' command when crossing streets, sniffs and marks poles, lawns, sand, bark, dirt. She is more tolerant of stranger-dogs. In parks, beaches, and the mountainside, she walks off-leash and stays near me. 

Radha doesn't like it when we go on holiday and leave her with a petsitter. Her 'roaming' roots resulted in three 'escapes'. Perhaps she goes looking for us? Each time, she was unharmed, rescued, and brought home. A miracle in a busy metropolis. 

Radha, our lesson in Karma.

Walking in San Francisco at night

Story and photos: Connie Hills
San Francisco

Please do not use images or content from this site without permission and/or acknowledgement.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Jelly in all her glory

Revisiting Vandana's INDog family after quite a long gap. Here is Jelly, perched on high places in true landrace dog fashion, looking gorgeous as always!

Now only Jelly remains of beautiful Chocos's clan.

The beautiful, serene-looking area in which they lived (in Palakkad) turned out to be death-trap after all. The state of Kerala seems to have little law enforcement or decency where dogs are concerned, even pet dogs. In the last few years Chocos, her daughters and her friend Karumban fell victim to hostile and criminal neighbours, and there was one tragedy after another. 

In an earlier post I had admired the freedom and safety this family seemed to enjoy; so much better, it seemed, than the fate of our city INDogs confined to sofas and pavement walks. Now with great sadness I have to take back those words. 

Two other pet INDogs I knew of in Kerala also disappeared without a trace. 

I suspect the life of village dogs all over India will also change a lot over the coming decades, even in real villages. More humans = more free-ranging dogs = less tolerance for dogs, even when there is no conflict as in this case. 

Coming back to Jelly, she is now confined to her family's area, for her own safety, but she is still very lucky as we can see from the photos, and lives like a queen (and looks like one too, especially in the second photo!

Photos: Vandana SB


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Sunday, July 2, 2017

We've brought back a classic: 'The Indian Dog' by W. V. Soman!

We have great news for fans of INDogs, Indies, aboriginal and landrace dogs, and Indian dog breeds!

Presenting for your reading pleasure, for the first time ever, the digitised version of the highly sought-after classic, W. V. Soman's 'THE INDIAN DOG'. The original reference on the subject, published in 1963 by Popular Prakashan, and long out of print.

This was the first comprehensive book on the topic of Indian dogs, and it remains an important reference which covers both man-made breeds as well as landrace varieties, with a chapter devoted to indigenous pariah dogs, and their differences from 'mongrels' or mix-breeds. A book then, that caters to the breed fancier seeking to discover Indian breeds, as well as the dog lover who admires the beauty of landrace dogs. 

We would like to thank Popular Prakashan for graciously granting us permission to digitise the only file copy in existence.

A huge thank you to Javed Ahmed of the INDog Project, for the idea and execution and for all the effort he put in to make it happen.

We thank Dr Krishna Mohan for his time and generous support.

chlorophyll brand & communications consultancy is thanked for their constant generosity and help, with special thanks to Sachin Pawar.

The book is made available as a free download for reference purposes only.

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, for commercial purposes, or use, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.