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Priya was feeling bereft since her black Labrador Waldo died on Holi. After a long and painful battle with tumours and organ failure for two years, Waldo succumbed to kidney failure. The festival of colours turned into a day of mourning for Priya. The next day, Priya left home on a week-long official trip. It helped her mind off Waldo. I immediately swung into action as I got two female puppies from police officers who were posted in North East India. I strongly prefer female dogs to males and Indian breeds to foreign ones. I got them vaccinated and named Miu and Bumo. Since they are Himalayan breeds, I gave them Tibetan names. Bumo means girl and Miu means doll in Tibetan. Priya was totally taken aback with surprise when I picked her up at the airport with two beautiful puppies.
Bumo, born on February 15, 2008 is a female Shah Khi breed, meaning ‘meat dog’ in Tibetan. Not much is known about this tall and long sight hound breed from North East India near Myanmar border. They are ferocious and tribal people use them to hunt deer, boar and other wild animals for food. The Tazi-type sight hounds of Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, and Eastern and Central Europe are believed to be the descendents of Shah Khi. Bumo is a fast and graceful runner, like a greyhound. She has excellent eyesight and even catches birds and chases butterflies. She is intelligent and obedient.
Miu, born on March 1, 2008 is a female Bujop Chi Mollosser breed from North East India near Tibet border. The villagers guard their cattle from wild animals with their help. Miu likes to jump over fences and can jump over a five-foot wall. According to Tibetan belief, the white patch on her chest indicates a brave and valorous heart. The tan pips over her eyes are supposed to indicate the ability to foresee danger three days in advance.
Till they were six months old, they were inseparable friends. Then Bumo began to assert her dominance. They may be playing together happily for one minute, but in the next minute, Bumo may attack Miu viciously and Miu will react ferociously. Fifteen minutes later, they make up and play together happily as if nothing had ever happened. Bumo gets jealous if we pet Miu more than we pet her. We have to be careful to give them equal amounts of caresses. They are just like sisters – fighting with each other but also being best friends.