In a first, the IAF has inducted a purebred Indian breed of hound from Karnataka namely the Mudhol Hound to chase away birds and animals that stray on airport runways and hinder the movement of flights.
Four Mudhol hound puppies, including two females, were handed over to the IAF on Friday by deputy chief minister of Karnataka Govind M Karajol on behalf of the Canine Research and Information Centre (CRIC) in Bagalkot district of Karnataka.
This particular breed of hounds is said to be agile in nature who need minimum grooming, are conducive to any weather and of good health. As per sources, due to their agile nature, these dogs have been recruited by the Indian Army, CRPF, CISF, BSF, SSB, ITBP, and the police departments of a few states for their services.
CRIC head Mahesh Akashi while describing the service dogs said the mudhol hounds have earned a reputation for being fiercely loyal to their owners and also for being great hunting dogs.
“The breed is best known for its stamina, sharpness, and agility. The services of the hounds are invaluable.” CRIC head was quoted saying to The Times Of India.
The IAF officials had placed an order for seven of these puppies. After completing all the formalities, four Mudhol hounds, aged around three months were handed over to the IAF officials of Agra Air Force station. Another three puppies are set to be handed over after six months as per an agreement.
A senior IAF officer told TOI that the dogs were hired to address the problem of ground-dwelling birds such as lapwings and larks. IAF chose to use a domestic breed as part of the Aatmanirbhar Bharat. Taking a cue from PM’s ‘Mann Ki Baat’ wherein he had praised this breed, the IAF decided to try the Mudhol hound. Fortunately, the qualities and temperament of this native breed were found suitable for bird scaring.
Bird-hits have become a thing of concern at several airbases. The IAF officials are hopeful that the dog walking module will help eradicate this menace. The IAF is also planning to extend these services to other bases depending on the success of this project.