About Me

My photo
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. I sometimes feature other landrace breeds too.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Raju and Deepa















These two babies are the newest members of the Club. They were both adopted from the excellent International Animal Rescue centre in Goa, by dog lovers Tina and Godfrey D'Souza.

It made my day to hear that Tina and Godfrey were encouraged by this blog to choose native dogs instead of any Eurobreed. Everyone who sends in pictures and stories is helping to give the world a true picture of these intelligent, affectionate dogs and the sheer joy of living with them.

Raju and Deepa - Happy new life!

Photos: Tina and Godfrey D'Souza
Aldona, Bardez, Goa

Friday, March 20, 2009

Sun, wind, joy

Pictures of my pup Kimaya and my Lalee taken last month on the beach in Nagaon.


Kimaya races into the sun




Happy pup




Leaping at Lalee. Lalee regularly punishes her for such offences but Kimaya doesn't care.


A rare still moment - conducting a thorough sniff-check of their friend Brownie. Brownie submits meekly to the examination.

Nagaon Beach,
Maharashtra


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Street dogs of Santo Domingo

















These pictures were taken by photographer and graphic designer Sarah O'Neill on a recent trip to the Dominican Republic.

Sarah lives in the Ottawa region, Canada. She got interested in primitive and pariah breeds after she and her boyfriend got a beautiful Canaan Dog last year. Her dog is called Jorja.

The dogs in these pictures are all street mutts, and some of them do have a pariah-mix look about them, much like our Mumbai dogs. In south America the first dogs were of a generalized primitive/pariah type, though these seem to have all but vanished after the conquistadors arrived with their Eurobreeds. Perhaps it was the same on the Caribbean islands, though these Santo Domingo dogs look closer to the original type than the Peruvian ones I saw last year - check my
earlier post "Rabies and the Peruvian mutt."

There are some pictures of Jorja in Sarah's photoblog. Make sure to look at all the other images too, she's taken lots of stunningly beautiful animal portraits - birds, reptiles, cats, dogs, horses, deer...Click here and select "animals" in the archive.

Photos: Sarah O'Neill
Ottawa,
Canada

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A victory for the Australian Dingo






These beautiful pictures (with my favourite snowy backdrop!) were sent to me by Julie Fechner of Dingo Care Network, an organization that conserves, researches and creates awareness about the Australian Dingo.

I've been fascinated by Dingos ever since I saw them years ago in a zoo in Sydney. I wasn't so interested in primitive dogs at the time, but I was still very intrigued by their appearance. They looked so familiar, like our pariah dogs, but strangely unfamiliar too. For one thing, they didn't bark!

Later in Kuranda we attended a performance by aboriginal artists and I remember they brilliantly imitated Dingo vocalizations, on their famous wind instrument the didgeridoo.

To many of us the Dingo is an iconic animal and symbolic of Australia, like the koala or kangaroo. There is still considerable mystery surrounding its origin and when it first arrived on the continent. Modern genetic studies are throwing new light on the role it has played in Australia's ancient culture.


Ever since European colonization, the Dingo has been considered a dangerous pest - sad but inevitable in a country with so much livestock-farming. Today the pure Dingo is facing extinction thanks to large-scale killing programmes and hybridization with Eurobreeds (80 per cent of Dingos are believed to be hybrids).

This kind of genetic
contamination is a threat to aboriginal dogs everywhere, including to the INDog - the Dingo's distant relative.

Dingo Care Network has been working for several years to protect this unique dog. A few months ago they won a significant victory when the state of Victoria changed the Dingo's status from pest to threatened species.

Incidentally, the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species classifies the Dingo as "vulnerable."

Click here for Dingo Care Network's website: it gives lots of interesting information, including on research and conservation efforts. Make sure you visit the photo gallery, the pups are absolutely adorable!


Photos: Julie Fechner
Dingo Care Network,
Victoria,
Australia