Pupdate for #woofwoofwednesday

I’m sure that you remember the two pups, Chetan and Chitra from my post, The Circle of Life. I bet you are wondering how they are getting along.

I am pleased to be able to inform you that they are growing into leggy, gangly teenagers. They will be trained to be valuable members of SAR Dogs Nepal and already have new handlers lined up for them.

As well as the obviously important work of searching for, and rescuing, locals and tourists, SAR Dogs Nepal employ and train local Nepalese people. For such a poor country ravaged by natural disasters and political strife this is a vital service. For more information about their work and how you can help please visit their new and revamped website:

SAR Dogs Nepal

How to help

Images courtesy SAR Dogs Nepal

The Circle of Life

I have some very sad news for followers of this blog and fans of SAR Dogs Nepal; SAR Dog Dunston has tragically passed away.Photo of Dunston

The dogs are locked in at night, but due to the heat the windows are left open. For reasons unknown, Dunston managed to climb out of the window in the night. Unfortunately he fell prey to a leopard.

Leopard attacks on humans occur more in Nepal than in India. Leopards tend to try to avoid humans, but conflict occurs when they seek out livestock. Globally, increasing urbanisation and the loss of habitat and natural prey are thought to be driving wild animals and human populations closer. I wonder if the recent catastrophic earthquake in Nepal may also have had an impact on the leopard and its prey populations.

Photo of Dunston and boyDunston will be greatly missed, not least by his partner Ambar Magar. He was an excellent search and rescue, and cadaver dog. He was also the pack leader and the clown of the family. He made friends wherever he went and brought comfort to children affected by the earthquake while SAR Dogs Nepal delivered much needed aid to remote villages.

Photo of Madame TulsiOn a happier note; Dunston was a lover not a fighter. Taking advantage of the fact that many SAR Dogs Nepal staff were helping their families during the rice planting season, Dunston wooed fellow SAR Dog, Madame Tulsi. The happy results of their illicit affair are two Dunston juniors, Chetan and Chitra (a third puppy, Chandra sadly did not make it).

As you can see from the photos, Chetan and Chitra are very cute pudgy pups. Their inquisitive and mischievous natures will be harnessed as they are trained to become the next generation of SAR Dogs in Nepal, proudly following in their father’s pawsteps.

You can find out more about the vital work of SAR Dogs Nepal on their website, as well as how to donate so that you can help them to help those in need. You can also follow them on Twitter for regular “pupdates” on their progress @sardogsnepal

For the moment though, destroying flower pots is sufficient to tire them out.

All photographs are copyright, and used courtesy of, SAR Dogs Nepal and Nirjung Gurung.

A Celebration of Service Dogs

September was National Service Dog Month. Of course every month people are grateful for the invaluable work that service dogs perform; from medical assistance dogs to military dogs. Regular readers will know from this blog post here, that the Search and Rescue Dogs of Nepal hold a special place in my little ratty heart.

Photo of SAR Dog Hunter with garland

SAR Dog Hunter with garland of marigolds

Nepal is currently celebrating its most important festival, Dashain.  It is a lunar festival lasting fifteen days and coincides with the end of the monsoon season. It is celebrated slightly differently by the country’s Buddhists and Hindus, but the main concept is the triumph of good over evil. Shortly after this festival, there is a five day festival, Tihar. This is a festival of lights, similar to Diwali in India, which was mentioned in this post here. The significance of Tihar is that on the second day, dogs are worshiped for their honesty and loyalty. Dogs get to wear garlands and, more importantly, are given tasty treats.

In the midst of these celebrations SAR Dogs Nepal will be having their 25th anniversary on 8th October 2014. The Himalaya Rescue Dog Squad Nepal, to give them their official title, is the only rescue dog group in the Himalayas. Nepal is a very poor country and this organization has struggled through civil war and natural disasters to keep helping the poor people of Nepal, as well as foreign trekkers who sadly go missing in the stunning scenery of the Himalayas. They train and employ local people, along with the dogs, in search and rescue and disaster response. The training is to UN guidelines and standards, the teams can work in jungle gorges or avalanches. The recent floods and landslides caused by severe monsoon rains this year have resulted in many deaths and SAR Dogs Nepal’s funds have been depleted by their assistance with the disaster recovery.Photo of SAR Dogs Nepal in Himalayas

Please visit their website to learn more about their work, personal stories and for some beautiful photos of the dogs themselves: SAR Dogs Nepal

It would be wonderful if you could make a donation to help the SAR Dogs with their invaluable work. As little as $10 goes a long way in Nepal and they would be truly grateful for it. If you can make it $25 that would be very fitting for their 25th anniversary. If you are able to afford even more, then that would be fantastic. You can donate via their website : Donate to SAR Dogs Nepal.

If you wish to help more regularly, or in other ways, you could visit Rescue Dogs for Nepal. The site is in German, but you can run it through Google Translate, here is one I translated earlier. This is a sponsor organization, run by Daniela Neika, which helps SAR Dogs Nepal with funding and training. You can become a supporting member for as little as 12 Euros per year. An individual, business, school or community group could also sponsor a particular dog and handler. If you, or somebody you know, would be interested in this then please email sardogsnepal@sardogsnepal.asia or freunde@rettungshunde-nepal.de for details.

Meet some of the SAR Dogs and their handlers:

Dunston and Ambar Magar

Dunston and Ambar Magar

Photo of SAR Dog Uttam

Uttam and Purna Tamang

Photo of Aldo Uttam and Laxmon

Best friends Aldo and Uttam with Laxmon Chaudhari

photo of Bilbo

Bilbo’s fancy footwork

photo of Aldo

Aldo flying high

All of the photographs in this blog post are the copyright of, and used with the kind permission of, SAR Dogs Nepal.

Update:

Those clever SAR dogs have added a new page to their website for their 25th anniversary. The page has some very interesting information and photographs of the history of the organization. There are also very tempting details about their resort for anyone thinking of traveling to Nepal. The area is abundant in beautiful scenery and nature.

New page for donations here.

25th Anniversary page here.

Please do click on their pages and learn about Nepal and their wonderful SAR Dogs and if you can spare a donation, please consider them and share this information with anyone that you can. Thank you.