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|Origin||India (Deccan Plateau)|
|Breed status||Not recognized as a standardized breed by any major kennel club.|
|Domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris)|
The Pandikona is a primitive-type hunting dog from Pattikonda taluk-Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh India. "Pandikona" is a medium size sight hound which is adapted to harsh climatic conditions of Kurnool district. This breed is associated with shepherd families of that region. PandiKona dogs need very little care.
The Indian Pandikona is one of the forgotten breeds from Andra Pradesh. The Pandikona is named after the location where it is found. Pandikona is located near Kurnool district in Andhra Pradesh. The area is considered dangerous to outsiders because of warring factions and political differences. This highly territorial breed is used to guard villages, property and livestock and to hunt any available game. Their territorial nature and sharp tempers often result in fights with neighboring dogs that trespass onto its territory. Since Pandikona is a small village with overlapping property boundaries and most homes has 2 to 3 dogs, it is quite natural for dogs to posture and get into occasional squabbles over borders. Most of the squabbles end in one dog retreating and no serious injuries. Villagers do not normally intercede in the dogs territorial battles. These intelligent and independent dog are never chained but roam freely among the village and do not take directions from their owners. They are normally within the vicinity of their property and take their guarding duties seriously. When bored or satisfied with the security of their owners home the dogs will go to the owners farm and continue guarding duties. Ideally suited for guarding or hunting duties the Pandikona is a fierce protector that is tolerant of errant children and young strays but are deadly serious with adults. The Pandikona will normally warn the intruder to stay away but the warning is fleeting and the impending attack carried out swiftly and with great intensity. Adult Pandikona dogs are focused and confident in their abilities to defend and will exercise some judgment when confronted with a young person or juvenile animal. Their hunting function is performed in the traditional way with weapons that have been used for generations. Normally done with a spear or "ballem" which is a sharp metal end affixed to a stick. Hunting in this way exposes the hunter and the dogs to grave danger from boars and other animals. The dogs hunt in packs with a leaders established by pack order and all territorial disagreements are forgotten during the hunt. Typically the leader has the best nose and bite and goes in hunt for the boar with the pack following at a discrete distance. It is said that the pack has a complex communication system which enables the leader to warn the pack of dangers such as snakes, scorpions and if it has found the quarry. If the prey is very large the leader will take the first bite and bring the prey down. If the prey is not very challenging the leader will allow the junior leader to take the first bite and bring the quarry down with the other joining in the kill. Pups join the hunt between 6 and 8 months of age.
The Pandikona shows wide variations in size as the local breeders never chain their dogs and are not given to selective breeding. The dogs are always left untied and can range from 20-26 inches (males) and 19-24 inches (females).
The breed is essentially short-haired with colours varying from solid fawn, shades of cream, white to black with white patches. All colours are seen with brindle being the rarest.
The Pandikona has an exceptional instinct for guarding and hunting. They are fearless and show a surprising instinct even as puppies of being territorial. They are very faithful and good with children though not overly playful. They are used for hunting wild boar, hare and even rabbits. They are also known to kill snakes and rodents. The Pandikona can become a good companion dog with frequent and strong socialization at the earliest age but is most comfortable on the job of hunting or guarding.
Female dogs are known to come into heat twice a year and litter sizes range from generally 4-7 puppies. In the native village breeding is completely natural with more than one male mating with a female.
The Pandikona is an ideal guardian and hunting companion requiring little or no veterinary care as they are hardy, robust dogs which are not plagued by genetic defects brought on by selective and irresponsible breeding by humans. The only way to acquire a puppy though is to travel to the Pandikona village whose people only give puppies away to outsiders who they believe really will take good care of the dogs. Further awareness and efforts are required to popularise this ancient sighthound breed of India.
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