About Me

My photo
Mumbai, India
I'm a landrace dog fancier. Founder of the INDog Project (www.indog.co.in) and the INDog Club. Before that, I worked with urban free-ranging dogs of Mumbai from 1993-2007. Also a spider enthusiast and amateur arachnologist.

This blog is for aboriginal dog enthusiasts. It is part of the INDog Project www.indog.co.in. Only INDogs (Indian Pariah Dog) and INDog-mixes (Indies) 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 landrace village dog of the Indian subcontinent. I sometimes feature other landrace breeds too. Also see padsociety.org

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

INDogs of Bengal

Kiran Khalap clicked these INDogs near Dakshineshwar temple yesterday. Thanks for the pic, Kiran.

For more images of INDogs, check "aboriginal dogs" and "long-term pariah morphotype" in Topics.

Photo: Kiran Khalap
West Bengal

Monday, June 20, 2011

Sita outdoors

Remember Sita from her first story in December 2010?

That post has "before" pictures of her taken at the time of her rescue, skinny and with skin disease. And an "after" picture of her arrived in Wisconsin, dressed in snow jacket and snow shoes.

Now here she is, running free in fields and woodland in lovely summer weather. Look at that wonderful coat, and the transformation in this dog!

All thanks to Francie, who rescued the waif and gave her a chance to become a beauty.

Photos: Francie Ricks

Bandu revisited

Some pictures of Bandu and me, taken by my friend Aarti on June 1 in Moharli, Tadoba.

Perhaps you've read about Bandu in these earlier posts - Bandu, my forest friend and
Is Bandu less interesting than a tiger?

On this trip I didn't get a booking at the MTDC lodge and had to stay at another resort. But I made it a point to go to MTDC to visit my brindled friend.

It was really hot, and Bandu and his pack-mates were clearly very uncomfortable. After greeting me and letting me pat him, he and his friends went and lay down in a flower bed. The plants had been watered and the mud was cool and wet.

Oh, and I also saw two tigers, a bear, a muntjac, a brown fish owl and a dhole family on this extremely short trip, and you can see all those pictures in my other blog if you like - but a visit to Tadoba is not complete without meeting Bandu, the "little tiger" as my driver called him!

Photo: Aarti Phatarphekar
Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve

Disco needs adoption urgently - Mumbai

This lovely INDog Disco was put up for adoption a year ago but with no success. Here is her earlier adoption appeal.

Bhavya and Shiv have been taking care of her but they have now been threatened with a police complaint and eviction unless they remove Disco from the building premises within the next few days.

Disco is not very friendly and she is also very energetic. A farmhouse is probably the best place for a dog of her temperament.

Anyone interested in adopting her should call Bhavya on 98920 96656 or Shiv on 95940 69100. Bhavya is willing to pay Disco's transport charges if she is adopted.

Please circulate widely!


Thursday, June 16, 2011


Beautiful Rani lives in the south of France with owners Emmanuelle and John.
Read about her rescue and journey from Tamil Nadu to France!

Rani was born at the foot of a large and beautiful mountain:

This mountain is sacred, it overhangs Tiruvannamalai, a small town in Tamil Nadu, in the beautiful surroundings of South India.
Ramana Maharshi, a very great sage and teacher living next to this mountain, regards it as the spiritual centre of the world.

This took place four years ago. And now here's the story of Rani:

John and I, Emmanuelle, are French. We are a couple.

We decided to spend six months in India in Tiruvannamalai in search of a travelling experience, and to practise yoga and meditation.

On arriving there, we went on foot around the Arunachala mountain, according to the local tradition which is called "giri valam."

The temples, the sadhus, the small village, the odours of vegetation and wild animals, the saris and flowers, all this was a source of discovery and astonishment.

One day during the trip, on the outskirts of a village a thin black puppy came up to me and followed me. This one did not seem to be like the others. Small, scrawny and ill, it had something attractive and touching about it. I knelt down to caress it and the puppy jumped into my shoulder bag!

Just at that moment the driver of a bullock cart asked us to climb in. John, the puppy and I found ourselves on board this carriage, which is rather unusual for us French people!

The puppy was a female, with an almost human look in her eye, begging for love and above all for something to eat. We gave her fritters, she was so thin that one could see every vertebra on her back, her coat was in a bad state and she had hair loss.

The same evening we gave her croquettes, but we could not keep her. How were we to take her to France?
After three good meals we decided regretfully to take her to the ashram where other puppies are fed by tourists.

After leaving the pup there, I was overcome with sadness.

I ended up going back, but the puppy was no longer there. After some inquiries with the cooks of the ashram, we found her at the tea shop where we drank tea every day. She was very happy to see us come back.

The family that owned the tea shop told us that they wanted to keep the puppy: what a relief! An adoption on the spot! The young boy Chandra and I searched for a name for her, and after several attempts he suggested Rani, the queen! I thought it a super name!

Unfortunately this lovely story lasted two days. The third day we could not find Rani, who had been removed by a neighbour during the night.

For more than a month, on my bicycle I looked for her without success in the lanes near the ashram. It was sad to know that she was not rescued and healthy with an adopted family.

Then after a day of walking in the heart of the town of Tiruvannamalai, John said to me, "Look! That seems to be Rani over there!"

Incredible as it seems, Rani remembered her name, turned her head and raced towards us. She was absolutely overjoyed to see us! What a moving meeting!

She followed us for thirty minutes up to the threshold of our house. It was at this moment that we took the decision to keep her, adopt her and take her back to France with us.

Rani was in bad condition. She needed care - for wounds, skin disease, parasites.

After giving her a good bath I took her to a veterinary surgeon.
He gave her a vaccination for rabies and other injections, and prescribed an antiseptic cream.

I searched on the net for the procedure for taking an Indian animal to France.
It seemed complicated but the reality was even worse.

I needed: 2 vaccinations against rabies

Blood tests after some time

To send the samples to the Ministry of Agriculture in France

A microchip.

All this was done in Chennai, after a four hour journey. The Indian Ministry of Agriculture is located nearly two hours away from the centre of this huge city.

What was discouraging sometimes was that we had a lot of difficulty doing all this. For example,
to send blood that might be contaminated with rabies is prohibited; a real setback. Fortunately John was there to help me speak English and do all this.

After all this and a positive reply from France, it was time for us to go back because our visa would have expired after six months.

Unfortunately Rani could not go back. It was necessary to follow the strict rules and regulations.

So we left her, with an enormous sack of croquettes, in the care of a kind Indian family who sold flowers in front of the ashram.

We went back to France and at the end of one month I returned alone to fetch Rani who had again become fatter!

I bought a special cage for air transport. The vet prescribed a sedative for the 8-hour flight that Rani would have to go through. I paid an excess baggage fee according to her weight.

Now Rani and I were in Paris at the height of winter. Rani was cold in the airport! My friends in Paris kindly put us up.

We finally returned to Nice on the Cote d'Azur, to be more precise to Villefranche sur mer, a small village in the south-east of France.

Since this incredible adventure Rani has lived happily with her owners, John and me. She goes jogging, goes for walks and sleeps in a pretty basket!

She is adorable and everybody turns around to look at her in the street. She is so beautiful, graceful and elegant.

Even people who do not like dogs ultimately love Rani. She has so many ways of winning over people, many expressions and movements of her ears and a look that is so expressive that no-one can resist her charm!

She is very sensitive and playful and she loves to run. She is also very greedy!

This is her story. I have so many things to add but I must stop here!

Thanks for your interest in the extraordinary life of Rani. This dog brings us happiness and love every day.

Long live the pariah dogs of India and the entire world!

Story: Emmanuelle Colorado
Villefranche sur mer,

Translated from French by Alokananda Mitter

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Monkeys and dogs

This post was inspired by Facebook wall posts and emails I've seen over the years, about inter-species friendships. Several have been about dogs and monkeys.

The pictures are always accompanied by messages about peaceful co-existence, on the lines of "why can't we humans live in harmony and peace like these animals?"

Obviously such friendships do occur from time to time, but I have a feeling they must be extremely rare unless the animals are socialized to each other at an early age. The picture here shows the only monkey-dog friendship I have ever witnessed. I clicked this in a village outside Similipal Tiger Reserve in 2009. Both animals were babies and were kept in the same household, so they had become playmates. (I'm not dwelling on the legalities of keeping wild animals in captivity as that is not the subject of this blog).

My dogs, who have tolerated all other animals (except rats), have always had a near-hysterical reaction to monkeys. Langurs visiting our garden are always barked at and chased. Luckily the langurs never descend to the lower branches or to the ground. I hope they never do because they'll definitely be mauled or killed by Kimaya or Brownie, or else they'll injure the dogs in self-defense. Even Lalee, who never had much prey drive, always chased monkeys.

I've seen some village dogs in Orissa and elsewhere chase monkeys, and a friend and colleague of mine once showed me photos of two dogs from forest villages carrying langurs they had killed.

Has anyone witnessed any interactions between dogs and monkeys, and if so what were they like? I've seen lots of street dogs in Delhi and also lots of monkeys around the city, but I've never spent much time there so I haven't seen the two together. I'd love to read the observations of Delhi people.

Photo: Near Similipal Tiger Reserve

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Deepa and Jamie

Deepa was always my favourite INDog Club member, because she looks so like Lalee.

This girl has been settled happily in Switzerland with Nicole's parents for over two years now. Read about her in The lake of swans.

Deepa is a gentle friendly soul and she has a special bond with Jamie, Nicole's little nephew.

Jamie was born just a day before Deepa reached Switzerland. See Deepa and the baby for an earlier picture of him. He has learned to speak now and the first thing he says every morning is that he wants to go to Deepa's house. Fortunately his home is within walking distance of Nicole's parents' place so these two friends get to meet daily.
"The boy shares everything with her from biscuits to ice cream," Nicole writes. "She allows him to use her back as a pillow on the sofa and seems to like it."

Recently Jamie wanted his pictures taken along with Deepa. Here they are!

Earlier posts about Deepa in this blog:

Her baby pics,
Town dog, country dog,
Deepa and friends,
Deepa, Bandra and Lalee,
Deepa in christmas card country
Deepa and assorted friends,
The Indi and the cat, Part 3,
Deepa and the baby,

Photos: Nicole Poyyayil

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Shalini, Somu and the squirrel

Summer temperatures in Ahmedabad soar to 40 degrees Celsius, so Nicole's Shalini and Somu have been spending their days very sensibly resting under the fan. Most boisterous play takes place at night.

Somu has grown up beautiful and healthy. Shalini is as slim and light as ever.

Nicole writes that the dogs like constructing tunnels of various depths and lengths. Apart from the fun of digging, they probably like sitting in the cool damp earth.

One morning they waited for a long time at the bottom of a neem tree for a squirrel to come down.

Nicole writes that she really almost expected to find them sitting in the tree soon...

Luckily their tree-climbing efforts failed, and the squirrel escaped unhurt by jumping to another tree!

Read earlier posts about Shalini and Somu here.

Photos: Nicole Poyyayil

Doggies' day out!

Play date on a nice cool evening in the sweltering month of May. Manik's Tommy and Chinky with their best friend Buddy on his terrace. Happy grins all around...I like!

Earlier posts on Manik's dogs and Buddy here.

Above: Manik, Tommy

Above, below: Chinky, Manik, Tommy

Above: Buddy with mom Charanjit. I met him some years ago when he was a pup!

Photos: Dr Manik Godbole