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INDogs as Security Dogs

INDogs as Security Dogs


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Published by: rajashreekhalap on Jul 16, 2009
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Potential of Indian Pariah Dogs and Pariah-mix dogs as security dogs

A database of first-hand accounts and incidents contributed by dog owners and eye-witnesses

June 2009

The Indian Pariah Dog (which we now call the INDog) is believed to be the original domestic dog type. Therefore it was also the original watchdog. This aboriginal breed has long been associated with man as a guard dog, a hunting partner, and a livestock guardian. In tribal and rural societies it has continued to perform the watchdog function to the present day. The colonial and post-colonial era saw a huge influx of European breeds into the subcontinent, and unfortunately urban India largely forgot our First Dog’s natural prowess as a security guard. Their watchdog skills are common knowledge among those familiar with the breed. However, specific examples have not been collected and documented till now (to the best of my knowledge). Race: The Indian Pariah Dog is among the most ancient domestic races in the world. It is genetically linked to the Australian Dingo and other aboriginal breeds around the world. Visit http://indianpariahdog.blogspot.com India’s free-roaming dog population is almost entirely made up of pure Indian Pariah Dogs and Pariah-mix dogs (mongrels). Street dogs in cities are often mixed, but with a large measure of Pariah Dog in their lineage. Traits: The Indian Pariah/INDog has the alertness, higher-order intelligence, territorial instinct and above all the courage which is required in an animal that has to survive by its own wits. At the same time it is almost always friendly towards known people and has an even, adaptable temperament. About this Database: The incidents here have been collected through a network of dog-lovers, including members of the Indian Pariah Dog Club, the NGOs The Welfare of Stray Dogs and Plants And Animal Lovers Society (PALS), and a few from news reports. I want to thank all the contributors for taking the trouble to send me their experiences. One problem is that there are few specific incidents of pet dogs actually preventing a crime, since criminals in general do not enter households which include any kind of dog - Pariah, mix-breed, Eurobreed or other. However, the natural aptitude of these INDogs/INDog-mix dogs for security work is amply demonstrated in these examples. If you have incidents to contribute to this Database, please email me at rajashree DOT khalap AT gmail DOT com. Please include your full name, the place and date (even approximate) when the incident took place. Thank you! Rajashree Khalap Indian Pariah Dog Club

Database of incidents
The incidents are listed in 4 categories: Category A: Specific incidents of successful crime prevention Category B: Cases of alertness about intrusion/crime, and incidents in which dogs were attacked/killed because they were good guard dogs Category C: General observation that crime decreases/ceases in a specific place after adoption of a Pariah dog or Pariah-mix dog Category D: Protectiveness of Pariah Dogs and Pariah-mix dogs towards their owners/caretakers/territories

Category A: Specific incidents of successful crime prevention 1. Dr. Vanaja Iyengar’s Blacku and Dogma, Hyderabad: Fought off attack on owner
Source: Narrated by Mrs Nandita Sen to Rajashree Khalap in 2008 Details of dog/s – street Pariah Dog and pet Pariah Dog adopted from the street This incident took place in Hyderabad around 1965. My sister-in-law Dr Vanaja Iyengar had adopted a street dog that she named Dogma. She also used to look after a street dog called Blacku. Blacku divided his time between her home and the pavement outside. Dr Iyengar was an examiner and one night she was waiting for a batch of exam papers to be delivered to her for correction. It was customary for papers to be delivered quite late at night, so when the doorbell rang at midnight she wasn’t alarmed and opened the door thinking the batch of papers had arrived. The late-night visitor turned out to be an auto-rickshaw driver she recognized from the street outside. No doubt intending to rob the house, he grabbed her by the throat and started trying to strangle her. He would probably have succeeded if Blacku had not been in the house at the time. Dogma barked and rushed to chase the attacker, but Blacku actually leapt over Dr Iyengar and knocked the man to the ground. Unfortunately the man freed himself and got away, but Blacku had definitely prevented a very ugly incident and probably saved Dr Iyengar’s life.

2. Lachmi’s Kalu in Cross Maidan, Mumbai: Prevented assault and rape of a young woman
Source: Narrated by Lachmi to Rajashree Khalap, Mumbai, 2004. Reported in the Welfare of Stray Dogs (WSD) newsletter December 2004. Details of dog: free-roaming pet Pariah Dog, owned by slum dweller

This incident took place in 2004. The dog Kalu was owned by a slum-dweller Lachmi who lived in Cross Maidan with her family. A young village girl had just arrived in Mumbai with her baby. Five men with knives accosted her and forced her to go with them to Cross Maidan late at night. Luckily Kalu started barking when he saw the strangers. That woke up Lachmi and her husband and they came out of their hut. The men released the girl and ran away when the couple appeared. Lachmi then guided the girl to the police.

3. Dr Aloka Mitter’s Poppy, Kolkata: Prevented a burglary
Source: Written account by Dr Aloka Mitter, Kolkata Details of dog: pet Pariah-mix dog, adopted from the street It was a cold, dark winter night in January 2001. My dog Poppy, a Pariah dog I had adopted as a pet in March 2000, was sleeping on her favourite bed – a bench on the verandah overlooking the landlady’s garden. At about 2 a.m. an adventurous burglar climbed up to my first floor terrace and fumbled around, looking for a way into the flat. Poppy was watching the burglar but the burglar was obviously unaware that there was a dog in the house. One of my employees sleeping in the kitchen had observed a man’s shadow cast on the kitchen wall and got up to go outside, but as his leg had recently been fractured and was in plaster, he couldn’t walk very fast. However, when the burglar started to warily clamber along the balcony ledge, Poppy leapt at him, growling and barking. The burglar fell off the ledge into the garden, breaking flower pots and shrubs. Poppy’s vociferous growling and barking alerted all the neighbours, who started to call out that there was a “chor” (thief) around. The burglar disappeared but the neighbours confirmed that he had been observed climbing up the wall just before Poppy leapt at him.

4. Dolly, Corinthian Building, Colaba, Mumbai: Prevented armed robbery and helped capture a thief
Source: Narrated to Rajashree Khalap by Dr Silloo Bhagwager, President, Plants and Animal Lovers Society (PALS), Colaba, Mumbai. Details of dog: Pariah-mix building dog cared for by some residents Dolly was a black mix-breed dog who lived in an apartment building called Corinthian and was fed and cared for by some of the residents. She was known for her hostility to strangers. One night around nine years ago, two thieves with knives leapt over the wall and entered the building compound, hotly pursued by the police. Dolly was sitting on a black water tank and the two criminals obviously didn’t see her in the dark. She chased them and although one man got away, she drove the second one into a corner and held him at bay, growling and snarling. The police entered the compound, but since they too were strangers to her, she didn’t allow them to approach the cornered man and they had to ask the building janitor to call her away so they could arrest the thief. Dr Bhagwager adds: “Since that day, Dolly is Super-Dog of Corinthian. Dina, a senior citizen Dolly loves and will protect with her life, lives alone in the building. The strong bond between the two, caring and fretting for each other keeps the old lady happy and safe.”

5. The Chapmans’ Sandy, Vikhroli: Prevented a theft
Source: Email from Vivienne Choudhury, Vice President, In Defense of Animals (IDA), Mumbai, 14 September 2007 Details of dog: Pet pariah dog, adopted from street It was 1992 and we were staying in a 3rd floor flat in the Godrej Colony, Vikhroli. A family called the Chapmans was staying on the ground floor and had cultivated a beautiful garden full of healthy rose plants. One night, at about 2.00 a.m., their very old dog, a female called Sandy, started a shrill, alarmed barking and wouldn't stop. I went out onto our balcony and looked down. A man was in their garden and had already uprooted a number of valuable rose

plants. As she kept barking, the family got up and gave chase and the thief dropped most of the plants as he tried to escape. He did manage to run away, but Sandy had saved most of their beloved rose plants. Sandy died a year later at the age of 15. She was a Pariah and living proof that these dogs remain alert and strong even though supposedly on their last legs!

6. Heera Naik’s Raja, Macchimar Nagar, Mumbai: Pursued thief and recovered stolen property
Sources: (1) Narrated to me by Dr Silloo Bhagwager, President, Plants and Animal Lovers Society (PALS) (2) Article “Dogged devotion: Till death do us part” by Sushmita Choudhury, Mumbai Newsline, Indian Express, May 23, 2002. Details of dog: Pet Pariah-mix dog Heera Naik, a resident of Macchimar Nagar, is restricted to a wheelchair. She mans a telephone kiosk. Her pet dog of seven years, Raja, rarely leaves her side and walks beside her wheelchair through the traffic. Raja himself has a twisted hind leg after an accident and he walks with a limp. He helps Heera in many ways; for instance he walks for 15 minutes to a milk booth every morning and fetches a milk bag back for her, all by himself. Once a particularly unscrupulous thief snatched Heera’s purse from her lap and ran away. Raja chased the thief and managed to retrieve the purse.

7. Constable Rajanna’s and Lakshmi, Commercial Street Police Station, Bangalore: Protected owner from attack
Source: Email from Supriya Dasgupta, Bangalore, 14 September 2007 Details of dogs: Free-roaming pet dogs If the press and other local bodies are out to demonize the pye dogs of the city then they should all visit the Commercial Street Police Station and see quite another man-dog relationship.

The three dogs have names- Kench, Lakshmi and Blackie. The dogs are part of the police community in the station. The companionship does not end in the station room. When the constables are out on their daily beat they take the dogs with them. It is indeed a really soothing and reassuring sight to see man and dog patrolling our street in the late evening and early mornings. When some of our local constables are on their duty post in busy corners like Safina Plaza, the dogs sit obediently by their side, happy to be of service to their master’s call of duty. Constable Rajanna proudly told me about Lakhmi’s faithfulness and dependability. He related an occasion in which he had an encounter with an anti-social while on late night duty. Lakshmi, who was by his side raised her hackles and warned off the rowdy who might have otherwise injured Rajanna.

8. Housing society dogs in Ahmedabad scare away thieves
Sources: (1) TNN report by Vasundhara Vyas Mehta, 20 February 2010 (2) Personally told by Meenal Shah Details of dogs: Ownerless pariah dogs, fed by one colony resident From the Times of India report, 20 February: Stray dogs scare away thieves Vasundhara Vyas Mehta/TNN ‘Ahmedabad: Manjula Shah had a bad cold that woke her up at 4.40 am on Friday. This resident of Usmanpura got up to clear her throat and was annoyed by the stray dogs barking around the housing society. Irked by the pack of dogs, Shah, 60, who lives on the first floor of Shakuntal Society peeped out of her room window. What she saw shocked her. An unidentified vehicle had come inside the society gate. The car took a round of the plot slowly, then stopped near a car close to the exit gate. “Two men got off. They had torches and were looking around the place. Then they went close to the car nearest to them and started peeping inside. As they were about to break into the car, the stray dogs started barking. The hassled duo tried to turn them away, but

the dogs kept barking. The two men panicked and decided to drive away,” said one of the neighbours. “This is the dog family that society members have been trying to get rid of. They have even complained against feeding the dogs as they create a menace around here,” said Minal Shah, a businesswoman living in the society. She added that she stopped feeding the dogs after encountering opposition from neighbours. “I used to do it discreetly. I am glad that people have realised the advantage of keeping them,” she said.’

Category B: Cases of alertness about intrusion/crime, and incidents in which dogs were attacked/killed because they were good guard dogs
These are incidents in which dogs barked at the sight of intruders, even though crime was not prevented. I am including some cases in which dogs were attacked/killed because they were known to be alert guard dogs.

1. Alert street dogs shot by terrorists in attack of 26 November, 2008, Mumbai
Source: Based on a report by Vijay Singh, Times of India Mumbai, December 2008. Details of dogs: Street Pariah dogs living in CST premises Two dogs living at Chhatrapati Shivaji Railway Terminus in Mumbai started barking at Pakistani terrorists who entered the station on 26 November 2008 during the infamous terror attack on the city. Both dogs were shot. One died but the other, Sheru, survived thanks to a kind-hearted observer who rushed him to the SPCA animal hospital in Parel.

2. Street dog Coke beaten by intruders, Mira Road
Source: Report by Sandhya Nair & Prathmesh Kher in Times of India, Mumbai, 4 June 2009 Details of dog: Street Pariah dog looked after by building residents “Mumbai: A stray dog, named Coke by residents of Gangrotri Building at Jangid Complex in Mira Road, was beaten up allegedly by miscreants who had come to smoke marijuana on the premises on Tuesday night. Coke sustained multiple spinal fractures and is battling for its life at the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) hospital in Thane. The dog was sleeping on the road outside the building around 11.40 p.m. when seven boys walked up to him and started hitting him with bamboo sticks. The security guards protested but the boys threatened them, said Shakuntala Majumdar, a resident.

By the time the building chairman arrived, the boys fled on their two-wheelers. Coke was taken to the SPCA hospital on Ghodbunder Road and Majumdar filed a complaint with the Kashimira police. Doctors said it would take at least 72 hours to determine whether the dog would survive. The stray has also lost vision in its left eye. According to the residents, the boys attacked the dog as it would bark at them every time they came to the compound to smoke grass. Cops, say residents, have picked up trouble-makers, but the menace continues.”

3. Street dogs of 3rd Pasta Lane, Colaba, Mumbai: Barked during theft of car stereos
Source: Narrated to Rajashree Khalap by Veena Pinto, resident of 3rd Pasta Lane, Colaba, Mumbai Details of dogs: Street Pariah dogs Late one night during the monsoons around 1986, the dogs in 3rd Pasta Lane barked loudly and persistently for a long time. Nobody paid attention as it was raining heavily and nobody wanted to open their windows and look out. The dogs did bark from time to time every night, but that night it was unusually persistent. Next morning it was found that the windscreens had been removed from four cars in 3rd pasta Lane and the music systems had been robbed.

4. Street dogs killed in Naupada, Thane: Possibly poisoned by robbers
Source: Report by Dhanesh Patil, TNN, Times of India, Thane, 21 June 2009. This is not about a specific incident. However, it seems these street dogs were killed because they were considered a threat to burglars. ‘THANE: The Naupada area has seen quite a few cases of robberies in the recent past. Also, it has been noted that whenever a robbery takes place, stray dogs have been poisoned to death in the area. On Saturday, Naupada residents were shocked to find the dead bodies of as many as five stray dogs. The animal lovers are speculating that the dogs may have been poisoned by the robbers.

To ensure that they can carry out robberies undisturbed, the robbers always target local strays and kill them. This trend has been spotted in Naupada and the police have already registered a number of robbery and shoplifting cases in last four to five days. Now, the incident of dog killing is more significant because there may have been more attempts of similar cases in the area. Rajesh Ratnaparakhi, who spotted the dead strays, informed, “Every morning I go on rounds with my pet dog and a group of stray dogs surround my dog. But, it was different last morning as no dog came near my dog. I then came across the body of one stray dog that was familiar to me. After that, I found another one. After going home, I spotted two more dead dogs from my window. Looking at them it was evident that they did not die a natural death. I then called the Naupada police and asked them to look into the matter. I lodged a complaint against this and now waiting for the reason behind the deaths. This could be the work of robbers as they have killed the local strays before committing a robbery.” Animal lover Shilpa Naik said, "I saw all the five bodies and noticed that all of them may have been poisoned. They may have even died because small glass pieces may have been put in their food. The blood which was flowing from the nose and mouth of those dogs reveal that they were killed. We are eagerly awaiting the postmortem reports." Repeated attempts with the police officials remained futile as they were busy with the post mortem-related activities concerning this case.’

5. Dogs give away the presence of Maoists; pets and street dogs killed on Maoist order: Jangalmahal, West Bengal
Again, this is not a specific incident of crime prevention, but this widespread massacre of village dogs was ordered because of their alertness and prowess as guard dogs. The article mentions that dogs barking had given away the presence of Maoists at Salboni and Ajnashuli Sources: Many news reports, including the one below from Times of India, Chennai, February 26, 2010 ‘Maoists order killing of pets, strays, before police action Dogs bark at Naxals at night, alert police to their presence

Sukumar Mahato/TNN Jhargram: Villages in Jangalmahal in West Bengal wear an eerie silence after dark these days. The moment you step into the deserted village paths, you realize something is amiss. Not even a dog barks. Maoists have forced villagers to kill off their pets and stray dogs for fear that the barking would give away their movements when Operation Green Hunt starts. Terrified villagers have been following the diktat for the last two weeks, killing off the animals they raised as pups. Most of them prefer to mix a heavy dose of rat poison in the food in the evening. “I poisoned my pet with my own hands. I fed him meat so that he would not bother about the weird taste and eat all of it. I didn’t want him to suffer. He rolled about in pain for a minute and died,” said a villager, in tears. Scores have been killed, the carcasses thrown in nearby forests or buried in shallow pits. The stink is unmistakable in villages in Belpahari, Binpur and Lalgarh in West Midnapore, Barikul in Bankura, and Bandwan in Purulia. A month ago, two Maoists were killed in a raid by joint forces at Salboni. Stray dogs had apparently given away their presence. The Maoist camp at Ajnashuli was detected this way too. Since the guerillas prefer to move after 10 pm, dogs pose a problem for them in villages, warning both locals and police. This is why police had instructed villagers to keep pets. Police stations, too, ensured a ring of canines by leaving scraps of meat in the perimeter. The Maoists hated this. On a few occasions, the rebels were warned of police movement by barking dogs, but they have been at the receiving end more often. With the Operation Green Hunt imminent, they issued the “kill” order. If a villager pleaded that he couldn’t bring himself to kill his pet, the Maoists did the dirty job. Tribals – who treat dogs as part of their families – have also given in out of fear. A resident of Kalapathar village in Belpahari killed four of his dogs to avoid Maoist wrath. “I had to follow their instruction. I hated it but my life was on the line,” he said. Tarun Sengupta, a Belpahari contractor, has sent his two pets to his in-laws in Jhargram. The diktat could eventually widen the distance between tribals and the Maoists, locals feel. Dogs are an integral part of the tribals’ life, leading the way in traditional hunts. Santhal chief Nityananda

Hembram said the Maoist diktat had created an uneasy situation. “Dogs have been part of our lives for centuries. This has not gone down well with the local people,” he said.’

Category C: General observation that crime decreases/ceases in a specific place after adoption of a dog 1. Kalpana Talpade’s Sweetie
Source: Email from Kalpana Talpade, Mumbai, 14 September 2007 Details of dog: pet Pariah Dog I have two Pariah dogs as my pets. The female is called Sweety and the male is Simbha. Sweety is 10 years old now. My son Dhiren adopted her from the NGO Ahimsa. She was only two months old then. She is very useful to me. I stay in a terrace flat. We have a big tamarind tree in our compound and there is a municipal school next door. People who were not satisfied collecting tamarind from the ground would brave it to our terrace. We had many small thefts in those days. But now, nobody dares to come up to the terrace. I take afternoon naps with my doors open as they keep a watch on the door. They have not bitten anyone so far. Both my pets are loving. We love our Pariah friends a lot and encourage our relatives and friends to adopt them.

Category D: Protectiveness of Pariah Dogs and Pariah-mix dogs towards their owners/caretakers/territories
General examples of protectiveness in Pariah and Pariah-mix dogs:

1. Valerie Tripp’s Zarah, Thane, Maharashtra
Source: Email from Monlam Valerie Tripp, 17 September 2007 My husband travels quite a bit, leaving me home alone. While he is Indian, I am a foreigner (from the US) and because I stick out like a sore thumb, many people know where I live (at the train station, the rickshaw drivers actually approach me, naming my neighborhood...). It can be a bit nerve-wracking at times. As my companions, I have two Labradors and a Pariah-mix (Zarah, adopted from WSD three or four years ago). Whenever someone new comes to our house, the Labs will happily greet the person while Zarah eyes them warily till she's certain I or my husband are okay with the person being there. And even then, sometimes she doesn't settle down comfortably. When I am home alone, this is particularly reassuring. Should someone come to my home that means me harm, my Labradors would be useful only in licking the intruder and perhaps thumping him with their wagging tails. It's Zarah I rely on to let me know if the creak of a hinge or thump of a door warrants concern, and then I let her bark away. She has never actually had to intervene on my behalf in the midst of a crime. But sometimes I wonder if that is because her protective instincts and hyper awareness didn't prevent it in the first place!

2. Rajashree Phadke and a street dog, Mumbai
Source: Email from Dr Manik Godbole, 18 November 2007, based on a first-hand account she heard. Rajashree Phadke used to work in Andheri East, SEEPZ. Every morning when she alighted from the bus at her bus stop, she used to notice a healthy stray dog, sitting on the footpath.

Being a dog-lover, she started feeding him biscuits every time she walked to her office. This intelligent Pariah made friends with her and took upon himself the duty of her 'guard.' He started accompanying her to her office gate. And not only that, at 5.30 p.m. or so, that is office-leaving time she would see him ready to escort her back to the bus stop. This slowly became a routine. To break his habit, so that he should not depend on her, the girl started giving him biscuits intermittently, but still the escorting continued. One day while she was leaving her office, she happened to meet a school friend after a very long time. She stopped to talk to him. This dog had arrived at the main gate as usual. He had also spotted her. While chatting, as she was getting late returning home, her friend asked her if he could drop her home in his car, to which she agreed. He took out his car from the parking lot and the girl sat next to him. Everything was fine, until their car slowly came out of the main gate. The dog went frantic, he attacked the driver’s window, and started barking and showing his canines. She understood what her four-legged friend had sensed. He had probably thought the man was kidnapping her. She asked him to stop the car. The man was scared too. When she stepped out, the dog rushed to her, sniffing all over to check if she was alright!! She patted him and reassured him. After that she sat in the car again, and the dog calmed down.

3. Agnese Barolo-Rizvi’s Paddington, NYC and Cambridge Mass., USA
Source: Email from Agnese Barolo-Rizvi, 14 September 2007 I lived in Delhi for five years. When we returned to the States I took with me two street dogs and four street cats. They are the most wonderful pets. Whether I am strolling in Central Park in Manhattan or in Cambridge Massachusetts I am constantly stopped by people who comment on how beautiful, regal and gorgeous the dogs are. Paddington is a wonderful watchdog, he only barks when an unknown person comes into our garden or at the door. I know that if he barks it is to advise me that there is an unknown

person at the door, it is also to warn the person outside the door that it is a guarded house.

4. Nandita Shah’s pet dog, Auroville, Pondicherry
Source: Email from Nandita Shah, 5 October 2007 I live in a village in the Auroville area and we are a community of a few houses. Occasionally there are petty robbers who get into our compound and usually they do the rounds reaching all the houses. I am lucky that so far mine is the only house that has not been robbed and also probably the only house that is never locked (I don’t even close the door at night, so that the animals are free to go out when they want). My dog has always protected my house no matter what. She can tell when there is a new vehicle in the compound or when there is a thief around and she has barked all night on the nights a thief came into our compound.

5. Reena Puri’s Smush, Goa and Kerala
Source: Email from Reena Puri, 1 November 2007 We found Smush in a gutter in Amravati. Smush grew up with all the love and affection we could shower on him and became a handsome dog with the noblest face in the world. We were transferred to Goa…And then our first child was born. Kunal was adopted by Smush, with as much affection as he lavished on (the cat) Billu. As Kunal grew up he learnt to love the big dog who was a good two heads taller than him. Every time the baby was taken out for a walk, Smush went along and circled the walker protectively. No human or animal, unless very well known, could get close. Our next transfer was to Mumbai. After the freedom of Goa, Mumbai was sheer claustrophobia. We had to keep Smush inside the house and he hated it. We took a decision to send him to Kerala where my parents lived. They have a sprawling house with a large compound. He must have missed us but fortunately he bonded with my father and followed him around faithfully. He guarded the house zealously and my parents always say that they never had to worry while Smush was there.

6. Vani Jhaveri and the building dog Chhotu, Kemps Corner, Mumbai
Source: Email from Vani Jhaveri, 18 September, 2007 We have a dog in our building - Chhotu. He’s 11 years old now and had been brought here when he was a few months old. He is familiar to all the people in the society and the people who often visit. A few years back a sign had been put outside our compound gates saying - OUTSIDERS NOT ALLOWED! Well this was also the time when Chhotu had started getting old and more protective (he was about eight years old and neutered). Since those days he has always barked at cars or people not belonging to the compound, who just enter and use it is a shortcut to get to the other side. Chhotu has been really close to me ever since we were both young. I was very fond of dogs, and he being the only interesting dog in those days, I used to give him biscuits and spend time with him every day. This made him also very protective towards me. One day just 3 or 4 years ago I was playing downstairs with my friend. It had turned dark and a car belonging to one of the nearby shops was entering our building compound from the upper entrance, at full speed, without the headlights on. Unfortunately at the same time I was running up the slope to hide from my friend, not noticing the car in the dark. It barged into me and I fell to the ground. Chhotu was sitting in the building a little further away and noticed this. He immediately came running and started barking at the car. And when I got up and the driver shouted at me, he got even more angry and tried to jump up and bite the driver. For a minute I couldn't believe my eyes, but after all he really did care for me. After the car zoomed off, he came and just stood close to me and my friend and kept poking his nose into me as if asking: “Are you ok?” For the first time I actually thought “A dog like this can be so great.” Now after growing old he still loves me equally or rather more. I am the only one whom he will never ever harm, whatever I do to him or however bad his mood might be. He is a true example of a loving, loyal and protective Pariah!

7. Harini Kariappa’s Muffin, Bangalore
Source: Email from Harini Kariappa, 17 December, 2007 Muffin is two years old, and (was) adopted off the streets as a twomonth old puppy. She is very sharp and alert, and is our family's

24x7 Watchman. Nobody can get into our compound because of Muffin's alertness. Being a family of besotted animal lovers, our granddaughter Taamara was 'thrown to our dogs' just as soon as she could sit unaided. All of them adore her, just as much as she does them. Ragamuffin (Muffin, for short) is particularly enamoured of her. Taamara takes her tail and puts it into her mouth, and she gives the baby an indulgent lick in return. The dogs are the baby's 'Black Cats,' and fiercely protective of her if they accompany us on walks. Quite often Taamara is sitting on the floor eating a biscuit, with one or two of our dogs expectantly waiting for dropped crumbs. Our family knows that the dogs will never harm the baby, and so we are all relaxed, even when she is crawling around the house with the dogs present.

8. Behroze Mistry’s Dino, Mumbai
Source: Based on email from Behroze Mistry, 20 September, 2007 The pet Pariah dog Dino is an excellent watchdog and guards the compound so well that nobody dares to enter. Even the children from the next door garden are considered intruders and chased off if they enter to recover cricket balls which they hit into the compound while playing.

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