The Loyal Companion
Dogs are one of the most loyal friends known to mankind. Throughout history, this animal has been revered for the unconditional love it bestows upon its owner.
Trusted for having a sixth sense, the dog is an animal which has been given a high status in most cultures and religions. They were domesticated very early on by humans as they were of great help in the survival activities of hunting and guarding.
Ancient Egyptians worshipped the dog and the evidence can be found in the motifs and murals made by them. Ancient texts show that dogs were buried in the family tomb and people would shave their head in mourning.
This animal has garnered considerable amount of interest across civilizations and is often associated with the gods. Anubis, an Egyptian deity was a dog and is also found in the Greek culture. Anubis's city is known as Cynopolis. Anubis is a deity which in part is associated with the domestic canine.
Tibetans, whose history intertwines with the Mongolians and spread of Buddhism, also hold the dog in high regard. They believe that dogs are closest to humans in reincarnation and that high lamas often reincarnate as dogs. Dogs are often used as temple guards or good luck charms. They are also highly regarded in the Sumerian culture. Bau, a Sumerian deity is also portrayed as a dog headed goddess of healing and life.
In the Vedic culture, many deities are seen with dog companions. For example Indra has a faithful companion in a bitch named Sarama. Then there is also the story of King Dharamraja (Yudhisthir) in the Mahabharata who refused to go to heaven if he had to abandon his faithful dog.
Sadly, today this highly-regarded, four-legged friend is ignored, abused, exploited, abandoned and also murdered to feed ourselves. The condition of street dogs is deplorable especially due to increased urbanisation which poses a lot more hazards for them. Inhuman ways of capturing them, and keeping them in unsanitary conditions with no food or water; hitting them, burning them, starving them, throwing boiling water or oil on them so that they can stay away and not ask for food or to put an end to their barking are just some of the things we as humans have and are putting them through. Not to mention, hit and run cases everyday with not even a glance back to see if the poor animal is dead or alive. The life of a dog reduced to the life of an insect - to be squashed or extinguished any time with no remorse.
The dog has been called loyal for a reason. These animals can give their life for their master and examples like the famous Hachiko or his master's voice prove the point. They have guarded us humans for centuries. In various places they help with transportation (sledge dogs in snowy regions), carrying loads, and even in agriculture.
Birth of 'Feed a Dog'
On the 3rd of September, 2010, at the Kadamba bus-stand, Goa, a seriously injured street dog, lay writhing in pain helplessly watching passersby walk past him with not even a glance its way. After two critical hours of unbearable pain, some people took notice and took the animal to the government vet hospital not far from the spot, only to be turned away...The dog died!
Like most noble causes find their inception in events that make us question our own humanity, it was this event that gave birth to 'Feed A Dog', a campaign to provide respite to street dogs from their plight. The initiative that started in 2010 has now spread across all major cities of the country having managed to garner support from hundreds of volunteers who work day in and day out to provide for our canine friends.
Volunteers of Dhyan Foundation country-wide engage themselves tirelessly in spreading the cause of 'Feed a Dog' through our various activities such as:
Partnering with various NGOs and animal welfare centres to run vaccination drives
Rehabilitation and shelter for injured and abandoned dogs
Help people and spread awareness about adopting strays and taking care of them
Emergency services for injured and accident-struck animals through our 24-hour ambulance service
Sponsor treatment and care for sick animals. Our volunteeers themselves have undertaken 26 tretaments so far.
Sensitising people towards the needs of animals and the necessity to protect them by spreading awareness and presenting facts
Rescuing animals from cruelty done by their owners or breeders. In a recent case our volunteers rescued a dog which was left tied for the whole day.
Spreading awareness about animal cruelty, specially strays.
With hundreds of volunteers across various cities, 'Feed a Dog' is continuously expanding. Today, we have more than 500 feeding points for stray dogs; and they are fed eggs, soyabeans etc. on a daily basis at fixed times.