Ever wondered why stray dogs furiously chase you? The answer is simple: You are trespassing.

This territorial instinct is going to come in handy shortly for the city’s stray canine population for professional reasons. The District Animal Husbandry Department has issued an order to take stray or orphaned puppies off the streets and train them as guard dogs. This, it intends to do in coordination with NGOs, the police and the local bodies.

Puppies are easy to restrain and train, the department reasons. The trained dogs would be employed as support staff to “large security agencies,” the order said. This would serve two purposes — curb the stray dog menace in the city and enhance security.

“In the light of heavy threat of robbery, dogs can play a key role in supporting security agencies. Large security services can be made aware of using the services of canines as part of security. Training can be given to security staff and the dogs to tackle encounters...This can be taken up in the Corporation area,” the order reads.

This move to catch the strays young and give a purpose to their lives is one of the thrust areas of a venture unveiled by the department called ‘Pup Adoption Centres through NGOs.’

An order dated November 15, 2012, by G.S. Sukumaran Pillai, Kozhikode District Animal Husbandry Officer, said the adoption centres would “strengthen veterinary services under the State Plan Scheme 2012-13.”

The novel bid to adopt stray pups comes even as the Kozhikode Corporation and the District Veterinary Office are locked in a blame-game on the implementation of the Animal Birth Control (ABC) programme to control the burgeoning stray-dog population.

“Urban areas face the maximum menace of stray dogs that often cause threat to human beings by means of dreadful disease such as the rabies. Though the ABC programme has been in force, it takes a long time to fulfil its goal. As a support to ABC, adoption of stray puppies will reduce the number of stray dogs,” the department order said.

It then explains the condition on the streets: “Male pups born in stray conditions are taken away for rearing, leaving the female pups on the street, which again become the next generation of breeding stock. If such pups are adopted and can be subsequently distributed for free of cost, they can be domesticated and can be removed from the streets.”

“Local bodies can use their dog-catchers to collect pups from the streets; NGOs can collect, rear, and distribute pups. The department can provide health check-ups and screening tests before their release to animal lovers,” the order says.

T. John Kattakayam, Chief Veterinary Officer, who is the implementing authority of the adoption programme, said on Wednesday that a total Rs.10 lakh has been earmarked for the adoption programme.

Five NGOs would be shortlisted and given Rs.2 lakh each to provide for kennels, feeding vaccination, medicines and sterilisation of the stray puppies. Mr. Kattakayam said the department would be shortly advertising the pup-adoption programme.

District animal husbandry authorities

in Kozhikode plan to take stray or orphaned puppies off the streets and

train them as guard dogs.