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

Monday, December 21, 2015

The K Gang at sea

Last sunday was our wedding anniversary - the 29th!! - and Kiran thought of this wonderful way to celebrate. (He has most of the wonderful ideas in our family). An evening boat ride in the harbour, to watch the sun set on the Arabian Sea. With Kiba and Kimaya of course!

Kiba was nervous to begin with, but he calmed down later and even took a nap. And Kimaya loved every minute and posed nicely for many photos. 

Enjoy the album!

Miss Jack Sparrow!

Mumbai from the sea

Photos: Rajashree Khalap

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Thursday, December 10, 2015

Jazzy: Update

This beautiful little INDog-mix is loving her outdoorsy life in upstate NY, with family and 'sister' Sasha. Have you seen her earlier photos on this blog? Click here

And, this update is long overdue: Her human Vandana sent these photos a few months ago!

Isn't it nice to see happy dogs? One of my favourite sights in the world! 

Enjoy the pics!

'Five, six, pick up sticks'

Indoors is nice, too

Photos: Vandana Deshpande Vaidya

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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Tommy in Devon: rosettes and training!

Far far away from the street where he was born, Tommy roams the quiet Devon countryside, winning hearts and rosettes wherever he goes.

Monique sent all his recent news!

To read all his earlier posts, follow the links in this story, and this.

'It has been a hectic summer with lots of competitions and training.

To promote the book, I entered Tommy in Novelty Dog Shows in all kinds of different classes.

When he didn't win 'Most Beautiful Eyes' (he came second), I got very upset! Strangely enough, as much as people here love meeting Tommy and think he is so handsome, and always ask if he is a fox or a dingo, and love hearing about coming from India, the judges were never impressed in the 'most beautiful dog' classes. It was always a cockapoo (hybrid between a poodle and a cocker spaniel, very fluffy dogs) that won.

At one show I decided to skip the beauty classes and enter him in 'best rescue'.

It was a big agricultural show and there were 15 dogs in the class. You have to tell the dog's story to the judge and they decide on what happened to the dog and how well he has done after being rescued.

She stood there looking at the group for a long time, and then said 'It has to be you' and walked up to us! We won! Finally!

And then we went to the next county, in Dorset, and won again! This time 'Best Family Dog' and a bunch of other 2nd and 3rd places. 

And again and again! 3 'Best Rescue' in total. The biggest class had 20 dogs and by winning we were qualified for a very big show organized by a famous English actor called Martin Clunes. It was pouring with rain, and we didn't win, but we did meet the actor and he loved Tommy.

I was also thinking of doing another season of obedience competitions, but the dog training school we ended up in was not a competition-based one, it was a behavioural one and the teacher was so interesting that I decided to skip the competitions and use these months to learn more. 

However we did the English Good Canine Citizen test, which we also did in the USA. It was quite different here. A friend of mine who recently moved from Goa to Devon came along for the test, as she was the one who helped me get Tommy ready for his big trip when he left India.

Since in the USA you must walk your dog most of the time on a leash, all the exercises were leash-based and walk-based. It was very strict and quite tough.

Here in the English country side, a few had left their leashes at home. The judge was 'very English' - it was almost out of a movie, but all very calm and relaxed. 

We did two tests on the same day. Bronze and Silver (there was no time to do the Gold; next year!)

One of the exercises was 'play with your dog' - to show that you have a good relationship with each other. 

I said 'Tommy doesn't play'. 

The judge stopped. All the other dogs stopped playing with their toys and balls. 

'What do you mean he doesn't play?'

'He plays with me or chases squirrels or rabbits.'

She looked on as Tommy started playing with me as if I was his toy, and that was enough. I had to explain though, that on the streets of India you don't have tennis balls and teddy bears. 'Aha! Oh dear!' with a look that implied animal cruelty!

But she was mighty impressed with his stops, sit, come and other obedience exercises. She also liked when we had the oral exam that she was holding food in her hands and he just sat patiently without begging. 'Indeed very well-behaved!'

Tommy passed with flying colours and again showed a new part of the world how amazing INDogs and Indies are!

The dog school we went to for three months is based on a system that was new to me.

An example is when the dog is on the leash,and growls at another dog, to have a command (we had 'look at!' with a high-pitched tone). So, let the dog look at the other dog, and then say the command, and as soon as the dog turns away from the other dog and looks at you, you give them a treat.

Non-confrontational. It was very interesting, everything was based on quietness and removing any type of stressful behaviour. It was so nice to be in an environment with a professional trainer that was so calm and in tune with what is best for the dog, not the owner.

Quite a few times I was baffled by this trainer, who defended the dog, in situations where other people might have just dismissed the behaviour.

Towards the end of the classes Tommy used to be so relaxed he would fall asleep, which was quite funny. Once I had friends with me visiting from London and I really wanted to impress them.

We had to do the exercise where the dog runs to you and you tell them to stop half way.

I did, but instead of stopping Tommy looked at his blanket and went back to bed!

It has been some pretty amazing six months here in the UK. Tommy never walks with a leash and most dogs are friendly and calm. The parks and walks are fantastic. We can't wait to come back. However it is starting to get cold now and it's time for Tommy and me to head to warmer climes...

Story and photos: Monique G Nerman

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Tuesday, December 8, 2015


Sumo lives in Pattukottai, Tamil Nadu, with his humans Senthilkumar and his mother. What a gorgeous little boy!

Senthilkumar wrote in about him:

'My mother and I planned to raise a pup for our home. Instead of buying one, we decided to adopt a pup. A few days after making this decision, we heard from one of our neighbours that a dog had delivered pups some distance from our home.

I went to take a look at the pups, but unfortunately the mother had sneaked them out of sight under a drainage canal. 

Then we had a week full of rain in our region. Early one morning I saw the mother carrying two of her pups, one by one in her mouth (eyes closed, still so young) and hiding them in a drainage canal near my house. These drainage canals I mention have water in them only during rainy days, not all the time.

I was quite concerned because I had heard the dog had had four or five pups, and now she had brought only two! I asked my neighbours about it and heard a horrible thing: some pups had been carried away in the flowing rain water during the previous night's heavy showers. The dog had only been able to save these two pups. I felt very sad about this and tried to help the mother, but she got very stressed and hostile and I had to leave them, because she had selected a good hiding place this time: the drainage canal near my house is always empty, even during rain. 

Then after some weeks I saw the two pups playing in the road. They were now able to run around. When I went near them they hid in the drainage canal again. My mother decided we would keep one of the pups, and give the other to my grandfather's home. We had heard that the mother dog had bitten some people before her delivery, so we had to be careful while picking up the pups. We managed to pick up one, but the mother saw us and got stressed and ran towards us barking. She picked up the second pup and carried it away to some distant place. So we got only one pup. 

He was two months old when we picked him up. My mother named him Sumo, because he walked like a sumo wrestler!

After that we consulted a vet. He prescribed calcium syrup and deworming for him. And we are giving him all his vaccinations.

Sumo is now three and a half months old. He sleeps most of the day and plays at night. He's very nice with us all,  and wags his tail at all our guests. He shows a lot of affection towards all of us. He does nip our legs, but I hope that will stop as he grows up. He is so eager to discover new things. As a result of his teething he has damaged some items but I know that is a puppy thing. 

Oh, and he is a good jumper!'

Story and photos: Senthilkumar R
Tamil Nadu

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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Running from Diwali

Like most dog-owners in India, we dread Diwali. Kiba is really scared of firecrackers, more than any of our dogs over the years. It's painful to see what he goes through. 

And Kimaya has started getting a bit nervous too. Maybe she's influenced by him? We don't know.

Unfortunately our usual getaway place, Nagaon, is actually much noisier than even Mumbai at this time. Hordes of urban barbarians rush there, throng the beach and turn it into a war zone. 

So about a month ago, Kiran started searching online for relatively quiet, pet-friendly places to escape to. (I say 'relatively quiet' because it's difficult, or near impossible, to find absolutely quiet places in this country during this festival).

When a friend told us about a dog-friendly resort in a place called Jawhar, we jumped at it. 

So last week, on the loudest day of Diwali, off we went with the K Gang; their luggage (heavy); and our luggage (light).

Jawhar is in the Sahyadri mountains, about 150 km north of Mumbai. It's a pleasant spot with lots of scenic views and walks. We stayed three days and nights and enjoyed every minute! 

Yes, we could hear crackers in the nearby town, but they weren't very close to where we were staying, so Kiba wasn't very stressed. 

There were lots of distractions for him too: the resort owner's three pet dogs, and four guest dogs! And some free-roamers! But we managed to maintain the peace despite Kiba's efforts to disrupt it.

Over to the photos now!

On our way!
Exploring a hill top. See that red soil? A lot of it ended up in our car. A LOT.
Khadkhad waterfall - a fun walk. The man in the pink shirt is Vishwanath, who works at the resort.
Vishwanath posing with the K Gang
Palace of the local royal family; now mostly used as a movie set
We took one of the K Gang's quilts with us, to make them feel more at home
Off to Dabhosa waterfall. See the mud?

At Dabhosa waterfall 
Getting up before dawn to look at a spectacular sunrise. The stupid things humans do...

Photos: Kiran Khalap, Rajashree Khalap
Palghar district

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Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Deepa, 2015

Deepa is back on the blog! After a few years!

She's always been one of my favourite Indies, because she looks so like my Lalee.

She's been living in Switzerland since 2009, with Nicole Poyyayil's parents on their farm. If you're new to this blog, you can follow her story through the links in this post.

I met this beautiful dog in 2008 before she was taken to Switzerland. I visited Nicole's home in Navi Mumbai with my Lalee and Bandra. Deepa was the perfect hostess and seemed happy to have doggy guests over! Lalee was nervous and stayed in a corner, but we got a nice picture of Bandra and Deepa.

Last year Nicole shifted to Switzerland, and before her own dogs arrived from India, she had Deepa staying at her house for a week.

'It was when my parents went for a holiday,' she writes. 'It was very nice having Deepa with me but she was very excited when my papa came to pick her up. I realized that she loves me very much, but her home is with my parents. Even at night she went many times to the fence, maybe waiting for my papa to come.'

Here are her pictures. She's put on a little weight since her younger days, but she's still as lovely as ever!

Photos: Nicole Poyyayil

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