Shahjahanpur: In a tragic example of the loyalty and unconditional love of man’s best friend, a dog who lived with a farmer in a village near Dudhwa National Park here fought with a tiger to save its sleeping master, giving up its life in the process.
The incident occurred on Friday night at Barbatpur village near Khutar town, 52 km from here. The farmer, Gurdev Singh, was sleeping in the open outside his house, with the four-year-old Jacky lying next to him. On smelling a tiger approach from the forest of South Kheri nearby, jacky tried to make his master wake up to the danger.
While the sleepy farmer awoke and was still trying to gather his wits, the tiger attacked. Jacky then took on the big cat, giving its master just enough time to grab a stick, raise the alarm and prepare to defend themselves. Meanwhile, the tiger had severely injured the dog and dragged it away.
After Gurdev’s family rushed to his aid, they began a desperate search of the surrounding area for the missing dog. Later in the night, they found its body some distance away. While forest officials were informed of the presence of a tiger nearby, the grieving family members and villagers buried the heroic dog.
“Jacky’s mother was a street dog and my children, Supreet and Gulshanpreet, took it in four years ago as a pup. It was a part of our family and used to follow them to school. Gulshanpreet is inconsolable and didn’t eat for a day. Jacky returned the favour of a few chapatis a day by giving up its life. I wish humans could learn from it how to love others and show devotion,” said the grieving farmer.
Barbatpur is very close to South Kheri forest, which is a part of Dudhwa National Park. A large part of the forest land has been encroached upon by humans and the forest area is fragmenting by the day. The entry of a tiger in a village is not surprising. The population of big cats in this part of the forest is very high and they sometimes come out looking for food,” said forest ranger S N Yadav, talking to TOI.