About Me

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Mumbai, India
I'm a landrace dog fancier, birder and amateur arachnologist. Founder of the INDog Project (www.indog.co.in) and the INDog Club. Before that, worked with urban free-ranging dogs of Mumbai from 1993-2007. Also a wildlife conservationist working in the tiger reserves of central India with Satpuda Foundation.

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.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


Tequila is a truly inspiring dog, not just for her striking good looks but also for the way she overcame the severe trust issues of her puppy days - entirely thanks to exemplary handling by her owner and trainer, Rajvi Mariwala.

Read her story sent in by Rajvi:

A friend overheard me squealing and came up to me and said, 'I'm sure you've seen a cute dog online.' 

I had indeed seen a picture of a tiny pup with eager blue eyes. Having lost my last INDog Grumps earlier that year, I was mulling over adopting a puppy. 

Tequila - the first Facebook picture

Without my knowledge, my friend called the number next to the pup's photo and told the foster carer that I would come to see the dog. I went off grumbling but came back with a few puppy nip marks and an excited giddiness. 

A week later, Tequila, who had been rescued from a traumatic situation, was home.

Tequila comes home

She was an extremely challenging pup. Building a bond and earning her trust was painstaking for not only me but also family and friends. 

Challenging puppy - nipping and biting everything in sight

Having to work at being friends with a dog - many 'non-dog' and 'non-animal' people fell in love with her. In doing that, she created an adoption avalanche. I adopted another dog, as well as a cat; and 10 other animals have found homes with previously 'non-pet' households.

Rather than touch and affection, we had to teach her how to play. 

Teaching her how to play

Once she learned how, she couldn't stop playing - tug, fetch, nosework - luckily it worked and helped us build relationships with her. The word 'play' is a very dangerous utterance in the household. Tequila will not allow you to take it in vain! She will relentlessly offer you toys till it works. Her favourite game is a combination of fetch and nosework where she must retrieve a specific white stone amongst a pile of similar stones. 

Her favourite game: nosework + retrieve

She also loves playing with her best friend ChomChom.

Tequila and ChomChom

Play also includes agility for Tequila

Playing fetch

Tequila knows I have her back!

From being a touch-me-not she has gone to patiently tolerating my hugs, cuddles and kisses. She still makes me wonder with happiness and joy at the gift that is her trust.

Story and photos: Rajvi Mariwala

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