Daddy-dog and B1
Having found a willing recipient of his seed, the brown and white stud dog made a decision that he was going to hang around. After all, this was a green and fruitful place with plenty of rats and squirrels for the taking and the humans had a propensity for feeding the animals who stayed here - surely there would be opportunity for him also?
He'd only followed Blackie here last year to ensure the expansion of his line but until now he had not thought to 'settle down'. That Kaneya dog seemed to be the one to win over.
Initially, Kaneya did his best to bully the stud off the property, but he knew what he was at, that invader. He played possum and cowered and did all the right body language of homage to himself and Krishna, so eventually he began to give up on the boundary chasing. If the big beefcake came anywhere near the quadrangle, though, he was given a thorough talking to. That's all Kaneya ever did. Shout. He never attacked or even tackled. Krishna the wise had taught him that. His time as a human companion had given him some good manners, it was true, but the sage of the canine residents at the ashram advised him that blood shed would be very much frowned upon by the masters and could result in eviction.
Thus Daddy-dog carved a niche for himself. It was not the easiest task, as he had to be constantly on the look out for the K-dogs. However, it was better than anything that had gone before. All that was needed now was to bring along his number one bitch, Winkie. He located a spot up behind the little cottage at the top by the gate which seemed never to have been claimed.
Then he called for her.
For a while he instructed her to stay put and he would bring food to her - or she could go outside again to forage. After several weeks, though, the 'new bitch in town' wasn't going to be held back. Particularly now that Blackie had visited her a few times and they struck up a deal about how to share Daddy-dog.
There was one human woman they had to look out for. She was different. She talked to them. One look at Winkie and a new name was uttered. "B1". It was apparent to the human that this was the alpha bitch and that she was forming a pack. Even Daddy-dog submitted to her. Not altogether surprising. She was well-built, fit, fawn-coloured eyes and tawny of coat. Those eyes had the look of the hunter though and the human could read that. What is more, Winkie could see that she had been found out.
Oftenshe overheard the amma instructing others to chase off "B1 and B2" as they were nothing but trouble. This resulted in the pack having to evade much waving of arms and throwing of sticks and stones. Winkie was battle-hardened, though.
She enlisted Blackie and Daddy-dog in her tricks of evasion. Of course, over time, even the humans had to accept their presence. As long as they didn't interfere with the two ashram 'pets', they were pretty much left alone.
It was clear to all who paid attention that B1 and Daddy-dog were a life-time pairing. He doted on her and she clearly had a soft spot for him. She wasn't happy that B2 was on the scene, but the black one knew she was second fiddle so there was a reasonable balance in the pack of three. When B1 got wind of Radha, though, she was not at all happy. That pretty little black and white princess, despite never uttering a word, clearly thought herself a cut above and despite taking the service of Daddy-dog, was not inclined to enter the pack. One day she would need some sorting out.
Then there was that daft, gangly, teenager they called Sakhi. There could only be one male per pack, so Winkie ensured he lived in fear of hers. He took refuge with the K-dogs and they, stupid creatures, took his side. Only once did B1 make a run at Kaneya in an attempt to make him fight. Not only did he just sit down and create the loudest noise possible for a single dog, but the whole thing backfired due to this bringing all the workers to see what was going on.
Not good. There were broomsticks and bricks involved in that debacle. The B-pack realised that to stay on these premises, they had to minimise contact with the K-dogs.
One day, though, they did manage to separate Sakhi. Initially it looked like he would give them an excuse to rip him apart, but the youngster had learned a trick or two from the ashram seniors and, instead, took off through the gap in the wall. After a few months he did return, much to the delight of many of the students; Kaneya, Krishna and Radha were indifferent to him, which made things much less safe than before. The B-pack again attacked and this time when he fled, it was for good. The humans who had been paying interest decided not to think to long on the possibilities of his life then. Or his death.
During this time, both B1 and B2 had produced another litter each of puppies and these in turn caused havoc. Survival rates are low, even in these comparatively safe environs, so only one or two each reached sufficient maturity to be sent on their way through that wall gap.
One thing was clear. The B-pack was establishing.
©Yamini Ali MacLean