Two ITBP retired Okay-9 warriors endure surgical procedure for tumour elimination

Vijay Mohan

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 7

In a unique gesture of compassion towards its retired K-9 warriors, two dogs that had served with the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) Force were operated upon for removal of tumours in their bodies.

Lipsy, a veteran of ITBP’s Afghanistan deployment and other sensitive security duties, was operated upon for abdominal tumour while Impressive Desire, who had saved jawans from four ambushes during anti-naxal operations, was treated for breast cancer. Both are about 12 years old and were an anaesthetic risk due to their advanced age.

Impressive Desire had mammary tumour but conservative treatment was unsuccessful.

Deputy Commandant Rajender Joshi at the ITBP’s National Training Centre for Dogs in Bhanu near Chandigarh, performed the surgery on January 5 under a very sensitive anaesthetic protocol and removed a massive 2.5 kg tumour.

She is now said to be back on her feet, moving around on her own in the centre’s sprawling campus. In her hey days, she had detected numerous improvised explosive devices in left wing extremism areas.

A Labrador, Lipsy had developed a tumor on the “ventral aspect of thoracoabdominal junction” and was suffering from pain during activities. A dense golf ball size tumour was removed during a 45-minute surgery performed by Deputy Commandant Anoop Nayak.

Lipsy is now recuperating at ITBP’s 22 Battalion, where she was leading a retired life for the past two years. She will soon be shifted to the NDTC, where a retirement home for K-9s has come up.

According to ITBP officials, the infrastructure for the home is ready and retired dogs, which are presently being looked after by different units located in various parts of the country, will start arriving at Bhanu in about a month’s time.

At present, dogs that are no longer to be used for operational or security duties due to old age or injury are sent to an ITBP unit where veterinary care is available and where they can pass the rest of their life peacefully.

According to the ITBP sources, there are 30 “retired” dogs on its rolls living in various units, where they are groomed and exercised regularly and provided vet care. These dogs are entitled to 70 per cent of the ration scale of active duty K-9s.

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