I remember once a friend asked me, “If you were to take birth as an animal, which one will it be?”

The answer was an unsurprising one for him. “Indian dog.”

Popularly (read sadly) known as the mongrel or a stray dog, he lives on the streets, walks like the king of the concrete jungles, is always up for loyalty and a long-lasting friendship with humans because co-existence comes naturally to it.

Born on the streets of India, he is as Indian as you and me. It’s time we do away with the disrespectful tags for the Indian dog because he is much more than what we perceive him to be.

Dogs are phenomenal souls, but no dog can be like our desi dog. They are smart, self-reliant and know how to pull off the stunts of life in whichever situation they are.

If you watch closely, he is a perfect example of poise in chaos but rarely will you see him dejected or down.

The list of qualities is endless but here are seven life lessons you just can’t miss in an Indian dog:

1. Fearlessness

Indian dogs have this amazing quality to live a carefree life in whichever situation they are thrown in. You can shoo it off but it would find his moments of strength elsewhere. It uses the ‘nothing-to-lose’ philosophy to its advantage and opens its heart for every stranger.

On the contrary, as a human being, our energy vibes are exactly opposite to that of a desi dog. As time passes by, we grow up to be fearful and are scared to take plunges in life. We have this insane habit of holding on to materialistic things, things which were never ours or are never going to be ours forever and fear losing them. We are taught to not trust a stranger and not be open-minded with our movements.

2. Calmness in crazy

If you haven’t observed an Indian dog sleeping tightly curled up right in the middle of deafening traffic and mad rush, then you’ve missed out on an extremely important life-hack subtly showing up and begging for your attention.

Who is passing by, what are people thinking of him, is he looking good while sleeping, will he be able to complete his day without anyone heckling or shooing him—some of the many thoughts he couldn’t care less about. It’s almost like he channelises his internal peace towards the crazy outside world.

3. Self-reliance

Since he is born on the streets, he knows how to make a living right from the beginning. Having learnt the nuances of braving hardships, he naturally leverages his life skills for self-dependency. This is an absolute opposite to a human life where one is always seeking support of family and friends for bare minimum movements and building dreams and hopes with emotional support.

This in no way means there’s anything wrong with human lives seeking interdependence. But, what the Indian dogs teach us is amazing too: Self-reliance germinates from self-belief.

4. Flexibility

Indian dogs have a mind blowing quality like that of water—flexibility to adjust. The Indian dog eats what you eat, lives where you do, even does what you do. He is extremely non-fussy and a happy soul.

5. Loyalty

This is true of all dogs, but more so for an Indian dog because his madness for humans is on a different level. Their ability to judge a friend from a foe is God-gifted. Since he deals with strangers more than any breed, he has a knack of better judgement and hence, his loyalty is intense and many notches up.

6. Awareness

Indian dogs are born to live in a free environment and thus, finding their own ways of life is a natural phenomenon. With time, life helps the wandering soul earn awareness.

Not only is he aware of his surroundings but also is extremely agile. He cleans up wounds, cuts nails with teeth and heals himself. When my adopted Indian dog senses digestion problem, he eats leaves, does a movement similar to kapal bhaati yoga and pukes them out and eventually, gets fine without medicines.

To be aware of one’s own mind, body and lead a life of awareness is a great necessity for a happy human life too.

7. Self-focussed

Indian dogs have this fascinating attribute of being self-focussed. They are not attention-seekers. You cannot but be a fan of his ability to weed out the noise and sleep peacefully. He focuses on himself and takes care of himself too.

Today this self-focus has become the single-most need of the hour for humans.

Indian dogs are an open university of life skills but they’re only available to those who are willing to see beyond the obvious and work on themselves.


  • Preeti Hoon

    Anchor and speaker

    Preeti has over a decade of mainstream Indian media experience, including stints at top media houses like Times of India, NDTV, Zee Business. She is TV/Digital/Events Anchor, Speaker at various respected industry forums. She was a part of Team Media at the inaugural Khelo India School Games (KISG) by Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Govt. of India and was invited to cover IIFA 2018 on her lifestyle portal – gorgeouswanderer.com Preeti is the creator of India's first candid CXO talk show 'DB Spotlight With Preeti Hoon' for Dainik Bhaskar where she soul-interviewed India’s top honchos, resulting in exclusive heartfelt, real conversations that received distinct accolades & appreciation from industry peers, stakeholders alike. She has won Kerala Blog Express, an international blogging contest by Kerala Tourism, as the top Indian winner and done exclusive interviews with CXOs, path-breakers, changemakers, leaders for 'In The Lounge With Preeti Hoon', The CEO Magazine. Preeti has been nominated in Top 100 Rising Stars in India by WeAreTheCity India, an inspirational platform for women and recognised as a ‘Champion’ by Sheroes, India’s largest online community for women. Her love for animals is seeing her buildanimallovewarriors.com –featuring positive animal love stories, a first-of-its-kind animal-centric online platform in India.