Let’s quickly begin with a historical briefing, before getting into the rest of the Indian Pariah dog breed information.
The beginning of the existence of the native Indian dog breed is shrouded in history; no one knows since when have they come into being. They have just always been present in Indian villages and cities since times immemorial. In fact, historical references show that these dogs have been present since the Neolithic times! Archaeological evidence dates the Indian dog breed to 15000 BC. An Indian Pariah dog skull has been discovered in the ancient Indian site of Mohenjo Daro. Prehistoric rock art depicting this breed, has also been found in the Bhimbetka rock shelters. Which, have been featured on the National Geographic documentary, ‘Search for the first dog’.
It may come as a surprise but these dogs originating in India are ‘pure breeds’. There has been no human intervention in their breeding process, through any kind of selective breeding, manipulated in any way by humans.
Though there are numerous regional names of the Indian dog breed in different parts of the multilingual country, the most common and widely popular English ones would be the Pariah Dog, Indian Dog or Indie Dog.
The term ‘Pariah’ in Pariah dogs, was used to refer to the lower caste people of Southern India, who were considered as outcasts and untouchables. This derogatory name was given to the Indian dogs by the British invaders, during the era of British colonialism. The breed’s high potential was intentionally downplayed during the British rule, specially by the merchants who wished to sell their foreign breeds within the country. However, of late, their growing popularity in the West, has resulted in hundreds of dogs being exported out of the Indian subcontinent.
APPEARANCE & STATS:
They are of medium, square to slightly rectangular build, with an average height of 18 to 25 inches, weighing between 15 to 30 kg. Their life expectancy would be around 15 years. The muzzle is pointed and is of equal or slightly greater length than the head. The eyes are almond-shaped and dark brown in color. The ears are held erect and are pointed at the tips, with a broad base. The tail is long, can be straight, but is mostly curled outwards.
They have a short double coat, a coarse upper and a soft undercoat. Common coat colors are- tan, pale yellow to dark reddish-browns, some dogs may have markings of white and/or black. Solid blacks are less common. Coats that are solid white, brindled, shaded or Dalmatian like spotted are never seen in pure populations. These may be a sign of mixing with modern foreign breeds, as they are mostly seen in dogs in cities and other such areas, where non-native dogs have been introduced.
They make a great watch dog. And have enough potential to be a guard dog, therapy dog and Police dog even, courtesy their cautiousness, alertness, fierce loyalty, patience, high intelligence & train-ability!
The Indian Pariah dogs love affection and are docile with their families. They are moderately friendly, good buddies with other dogs and tolerant to other pets. They are very patient and can be great nannies to children or even become therapy dogs. They make excellent family pets and are good with children as well as adults, though they need early socialization with children. This will help them to acclimatize to children or other pets in the house. Almost always ready to play, the Indian Pariah in general is a bundle of energy, so they would need regular exercise, that is on an everyday basis. They make appropriate pets for people who love to run or just go for a long walk.
They have a cautious temperament. Paired, along with their abundance of energy and inquisitive streak. All of which, make them the perfect watch dog. So if anyone is at the door or if there is an unsolicited presence, your Pariah will inform it to you with some relentless barks. Their noisiness quotient would be somewhere between medium to high.
INTELLIGENCE AND TRAIN-ABILITY:
They are pretty smart and obedient and have a high guarding potential, making them a great guard dog. Indian Pariahs are one of the most trainable dogs around because of their high intelligence and patience. You just have to identify the temperament of the puppy, there might be some puppies that may be shy to start with and take time to train but we should understand that every dog will train at their own pace. Simply start with the basic training commands such as ‘stay’, ‘sit’ and ‘down’. This is an intelligent breed and learns to adapt quickly. The best way to train them will be with the help of treats as they will love to be acknowledged for their behavior.
Here’s an awe-inspiring piece of news, that I just can’t wait to share, that also adds such immense value to our article on the Indian Pariah dog breed information!
This story is that of a female Indie stray dog, who was rescued by the Kolkata cops, from a bunch of retarded children who were having fun pelting her, about a couple years ago. They saved the bleeding pup, named her ‘Asha’ (meaning hope) and intended to keep her as a pet, but her fate had different plans for her.
An officer soon sensed her extraordinary talents and insisted, she joins the training that was exclusively meant for Labradors and German Shepherds in India. And she did prove her mettle! Sajal Mondal, the head of the academy, quoted, “She passed the grueling training with flying colors and drugs and explosives like TNT were no match for Asha’s keen sense of smell.” “She performed better than her pedigree peers, jumping nearly six feet (two meters) high. She is also our fastest runner.” He added.
Yes, the above pictures are hers!
Read the article from Times Of India here.
The Indian Pariah is a versatile breed and suits almost every household. There are not many qualms associated with this breed, when the climate is concerned. They are perfect for all the Indian weather conditions.
The Indian Pariah dog, as we discussed earlier, has been present in the sub-continent for ages and have bred through natural selection, without any human intervention. This, has helped them to be one of the most adaptable dogs as they have with time, slowly evolved into their hardy selves. The Pariah dogs are in fact, one of the healthiest breeds known, as they are not prone to any specific medical conditions. So getting this breed will keep the vet bills to the minimum, as they will also be free of the environment induced allergies and skin issues, that most pedigree dogs are prone to.
Even though they are the least susceptible to any of the common canine diseases, we should understand that there can be times when your pet may fall prey to illnesses, like every other breed, in spite of the chances being comparatively much lesser.
Another plus would be the fact, that their fondness for food or appetite is on the lower side, hence the proneness to obesity would be negligible as well.
The Indian Pariah dogs are highly tolerant to warm temperatures and moderately to cold. They have a short coat with medium density that do not require much maintenance, when it comes to their grooming. They shed all year round but the absence of a thick undercoat, ensures that you do not see hair all over the house. Regular brushing will keep the shedding minimal as it can easily and effectively remove all dead hair from the coat itself, before it reaches the furniture. Due to their coat type, grooming them does not take much of your time or effort.
They also have less oil glands on their skin, which helps them stay clean at all times, keeping odor very low, thus seldom needing baths. They don’t drool as well.
And with that we have come to the conclusion of ‘The Indian Pariah dog breed information’.
What do you think?
What a perfect dog, right? Told you!
Also here’s a slider full of the Indie dog pictures, specially for the international readers who are new to this breed. (And of course for the Indian too, I’m glad you are interested in having more of these babies, in spite of chancing upon them every single day!)
P.S. These pictures were sourced from the internet, my friends, family, NGOs and some were even clicked by me. I had planned to include ‘some’ pictures of these dogs, in different places, at different times, to show off their unique looks and personalities naturally, for an even better understanding of the breed. Because isn’t a picture worth a thousand words? But I received immense support from a few NGOs (specially PFA- Bhubaneshwar & Patna units), who appreciated my effort for the strays and showered me with loads of pictures, that I had a really tough time shortlisting (due to the fixed slider limit)! Really sorry for not being able to mention their due credits beneath each picture, as doing that for this amount of pictures would have taken me forever. But please know, I am really, really grateful to each & every one of you! Can’t thank you enough..
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Suggested reading: If you enjoyed reading this, you must not miss the article that lead to it. You can call it a prologue. Find it here.
Stay Dog Blessed!