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Thursday, 21 July 2011

Close encounter with Dobes

The more I see of humans, The more I love Dogs

I was young, perhaps fourteen years old and an ardent lover of dogs. Most of my leisure was spent on painting them and reading about them.

A friend of mine who also happened to be a dog trainer, invited me to visit The TATA CANINE SQUAD in Jamshedpur, the steel city of India. Tata Iron and Steel Company maintains a highly trained canine squad and these dogs are deputed at night along with their handlers to guard the various yards in the Company's premises.

I had seen some of these dogs performing the obedience tests in  dog shows and was highly impressed with their perfect training. I simply could not have let this opportunity slip and readily accepted his invitation!!

The Canine squad is housed in a sprawling compound and entry is restricted. As my friend, due to his profession, was well known to the guards, we were allowed to enter.

I could view a few massive Dobes and German Shepherds, their coats shimmering in the sun, standing at a distance. I walked briskly towards them in sheer excitement! It was only when I was quite close to them that I realized that they were all unleashed and free to move!

Their piercing eyes seemed to be sizing up the stranger. Death seemed imminent! My instinct told me to run but that would have been disastrous. I certainly did not have an iota of chance to out run them! Not a single trainer could be seen to whom I could look for help and my friend was still near the  gate, busy talking to the guards.

I was paralyzed with fear, perspiring from head to foot, waiting for the brutes to close in for the kill! Here I was all alone, facing a pack of most ferocious breed of the canine world!! I could only pray to GOD!!

Fortunately,  my friend realized my deplorable condition and quickly came to my rescue. I gained my senses when he told me that the dogs would not attack even a stranger until and unless they received a command from their handler.

Yet, in those moments of extreme fear, I didn't fail to notice the awesome sinews, the lithe, taut bodies exuding sheer power and strength. It was symmetry personified !


Raj Prateek Verma

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