After being at the receiving end of a social media barrage condoning the Kerala government’s decision to cull its stray dog population, the state CM Oomen Chandy is now learnt to be in talks with the BSF to train these dogs for border patrolling duties instead.
Issuing a public statement on the matter, a BSF spokesperson had this to say: “Even before the recent Gurdaspur attack took place we had been deliberating internally on ways to further improve our border patrolling capabilities. When the Kerala CM came to know about our efforts post attack, he immediately got in touch with our organization and we soon realized that both parties stood to gain mutually from such an undertaking.”
Plans are afoot to capture strays and move them to a dedicated canine training center to be set up in the state soon. At this center, handpicked BSF personnel will be tasked for training these dogs to patrol India’s borders, working in small packs of five to six each. The training curriculum will focus on three key aspects: teamwork, early detection and warning and self-sufficiency. Accordingly, the syllabus will contain dedicated training modules on pack behaviour to enable efficient teamwork, distinguishing friend from foe and effective human-canine interaction for the dogs to be able to sequester potential threats and communicate them to their human handlers and wildlife survival techniques for enabling them to independently forage and survive in the wild.
“Dogs have historically evolved to be man’s best friend and being able to leverage Kerala’s stray population in such a manner that it will prove to be an enormous force-multiplier for the BSF in its execution of border-patrolling duties. Furthermore, we plan to train these dogs to identify rabid individuals amongst their midst and work in unison to drive them over the border, in keeping with the home minister’s directive to give a ‘fitting reply’ to transgression from the other side.”
It has been rumored that the BSF is looking to rope in famous dog trainer Cesar Millan to train the first batch of instructors for this project.