For Immediate Release:
16 September 2014
Benazir Suraiya; [email protected]
Sachin Bangera; [email protected]
The Hunt is On to Find the Country’s Top Rescued Pooch
Surat – After sifting through hundreds of photographs of lovable Indian “community dogs” – as well as their rescue stories – the judges have selected Cujo, whose guardian is Sanjukta Sivakumar of Surat, as a finalist in PETA’s third annual Cutest Indian Dog Alive contest.
“Cujo was born on our school campus”, says Sanjukta. “His two siblings were killed soon after birth. One was run over by a bus and the other mauled by an adult male dog. The students begged me to save and look after Cujo, who became our school mascot.”
Sanjukta rescued Cujo and gives him all the love he deserves.
“Cujo is a lucky dog, and he has returned the favour of being rescued by bringing much love and joy into Sanjukta’s life”, says PETA CEO Poorva Joshipura. “All rescued dogs are already winners because their lives were saved by people who love them for who they are.”
The lucky pup who wins the Cutest Indian Dog Alive title will receive a “100% Desi Dog” doggie T-shirt, and his or her guardian will receive a “My Dog Is a Rescue” T-shirt along with an autographed copy of PETA India founder Ingrid Newkirk’s book Let’s Have a Dog Party! The second- and third-place winners will also receive prizes, and all three top placers will appear in an upcoming issue of Animal Times, PETA India’s magazine for members.
PETA urges prospective guardians to adopt an Indian “community animal” from the streets or an animal shelter rather than buying puppies or kittens sold in pet shops. Breeders and pet shops often keep animals in dismal conditions, and because pedigree dogs are bred for certain exaggerated physical traits, such as long ears and drooping backs, many foreign breeds of dogs suffer from various issues ranging from breathing problems, cancer and heart disease to bleeding disorders, skeletal malformation and eye problems. Indian “community dogs” are healthier and more robust than their “purebred” cousins are.
To read all the finalists’ rescue stories and to vote, please visit PETAIndia.com. PETA will select the winner based on several factors, including vote count. The winner will be announced 24 September. See full contest details here.