Monday, January 9, 2012

Jawaharlal Nehru University Campus Overrun by Strays

This report in India Today magazine focuses on two things: the problem of aggressive strays attacking people and the problem of “dog lovers” sabotaging attempts to sterilize the dogs.

The 1,000 acre JNU campus is reported to have around 800 dogs with over 20 attacks on students in a single 3-day period alone. The question of where these dogs came from, however, is not covered.

Most interesting for me are the comments by some students near the end of the report that “…only a few dogs are creating a nuisance" and that “most of them are harmless.”

I have never been to India and do not know the circumstances at this university but this sounds like a classic case of lumping all unowned dogs into the same category of “problem” without looking at the root causes. The aggression shown by a few dogs strikes me as typical behavior for abandoned pets that have been socialized to people compared to a more relaxed stance by long-term unowned dogs.

Identifying and controlling the few problem dogs may be enough to solve the short-term issue of aggression. However, it sounds like the wider problem probably has it’s roots elsewhere.  

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