About Me

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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

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Mountain beauty

Ashish Banerji sent me this charming story and pictures. This is an Indian dog though not an INDog (Indian Pariah): she seems a mix between a Himalayan Sheepdog/Bhutia and an INDog, a common mix in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand. At higher altitudes one sees pure Bhutias with a heavier build and coat. More on them in another post. 

The story:

Recently, about 3 weeks back, both my younger brothers went on a hiking trip up north. On one leg of their journey they had planned to ascend to Kedarkantha (12500 ft) but had to turn back halfway due to a sudden and dangerous life-threatening winter storm.

At the start of their ascent to Kedarkantha a female adult dog suddenly appeared out of nowhere and joined my brothers and guides on the hike! The guides said the animal was a sheep dog and would often accompany hikers even though they were total strangers to her.

Walking ahead on the trail

Sitting on a high ledge, waiting for the humans to catch up

My brothers being avid Indian dog lovers felt concerned about the safety of the dog in that extreme cold weather. They tried to discourage her, but she continued to walk along with them.

As I mentioned earlier, the weather had turned dangerous and they had to abort the trip and turn back, barely escaping with their lives thanks to the severity of the storm and avalanches. Through it all the dog stuck with them. After a night of heavy snowfall, when the snow was almost 3 to 4 feet thick, one of the guides used to pick up the dog and throw her a few feet away, and she would come bounding back, wanting more! She seemed to enjoy this game...at least that's what the guide said.

What an amazing dog, to brave such severe weather to accompany humans!

Eating from a donga, a wooden bowl carved from a tree trunk
by the local shepherds for their sheepdogs

Curled up in snowfall. The temperature was around -4.
Sitting outside the tent. The temperature was about -2 with a killer cold wind blowing around.

With my brother

Photos and story: Ashish Banerji

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Sinfy said...

This dog stayed in the Shepherds hut at Night, where we took refuge, and I believe that in the blizzard the temp dropped to -10 C. we were extremely worried about her, but the locals said that she will manage.. Though the Shepherds did ensure that extra food was cooked for that Dog.. :)

Rajashree Khalap said...

Mountain dogs are used to severe cold :) Your photos are gorgeous.

Anonymous said...

"Though the Shepherds did ensure that extra food was cooked for that Dog." --- Nice nice Extra Nice to see the concern from the shepherds towards the dog -- Shashi