Ban on wolf dogs

News Excerpt:

The Department of Animal Husbandry and Dairying recently issued a letter comprising 23 breeds including wolf dogs to states where it requested local bodies to not issue any licenses or permits for the sale and breeding of dogs that are considered to be ‘ferocious’ and ‘dangerous for human life’. 

About Wolf Dogs:

  • Wolf dogs are produced by breeding a wolf with any of a variety of domestic dogs, including Akitas, German shepherds, Alaskan malamutes, and huskies.
  • A Wolf-dog is not a “breed” but rather an animal that contains some wolf (Canis lupus) DNA and some domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris) DNA. 
  • Dogs and wolves share a common ancestor and almost identical DNA, and thus share many physical and behavioral traits. Each wolf-dog is an individual. 
  • Their personalities and temperaments depend on the amount of socialization they received early in life, the breeds of dogs in the animal (usually German Shepherd, Siberian Husky, and/or Malamute), and the percentage of Content of wolf vs. dog in them.

Key points of the wolf-dog issue:

  • The blend of wild and domestic genes in wolf-dog hybrids, however, gives rise to a complicated mosaic of disposition and instinct. 
  • Hybrids tend to be relatively gentle when young, but as they grow, they increasingly resemble wolves in their behavior. Wolf dogs thus have the instincts of a wild animal.
  • Recent reports of escaped wolf dogs killing small dogs and threatening humans in the United States have renewed concerns about whether or not these animals should continue to be bred and sold to the public.
  • Keeping wolf dogs in India is punishable under the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, since the Wolf is a Schedule I species.
  • Exotic breeds are bought by urban Indians and often let out on the streets when they become unmanageable. 
    • They roam the streets along with stray or pye-dogs which are already a controversial issue in urban India.
  • Hybridization is happening between stray dogs and any kind of canid including wolves, jackals, and others.
    • In many cases these (wolf-dog) hybrids are aggressive towards or involved in the killing of sheep or livestock.

Way Forward:

  • Strict Regulations: Enforce strict regulations on the breeding, sale, and ownership of wolf dogs. This could include mandatory licensing, registration, and adherence to specific care standards.
  • Education and Awareness: Conduct public awareness campaigns to educate people about the risks and responsibilities associated with owning wolf dogs. This could help reduce impulse purchases and increase responsible ownership.
  • Rescue and Rehabilitation: Establish programs for the rescue and rehabilitation of wolf dogs that have been abandoned or mistreated. This could involve working with animal welfare organizations and sanctuaries.
  • Legal Enforcement: Strengthen enforcement of existing laws, such as the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, to ensure that those breeding or owning wolf dogs illegally are held accountable.
  • Engagement with Local Communities: Engage with local communities, especially in urban areas where wolf dogs are more commonly owned, to address concerns and promote responsible pet ownership practices.


The ban on wolf dogs highlights the need for responsible pet ownership and conservation. Strict regulations, education, and enforcement are crucial. Engaging with communities and supporting rescue efforts can mitigate risks and ensure the welfare of both animals and humans.

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