Dogs Self-Aware

Are Dogs Self-Aware & Sentient Beings?

Are Dogs Self-Aware & Sentient Beings?

Dogs Self-Aware

Dog lovers often find themselves pondering the intriguing question: Are dogs self-aware?
It’s a query that touches the heart of our relationship with these loyal and loving companions.
Every dog owner has always wondered what dogs think about. Do they contemplate their place in the universe? Are their minds simply living in the moment, consumed by thoughts of chewing bones and squirrels?
As we delve into this fascinating topic, let’s explore the world of shelter dogs and their potential for dogs self-aware.

Understanding Dogs Self-Awareness

“The eyes of a dog, the expression of unconditional love.”

In its simplest form, Dogs self-aware refers to individuals’ ability to recognize themselves as separate from their environment and other beings. It’s a trait long associated with higher cognitive abilities in humans. But when it comes to our canine friends, the question of self-awareness is more complex.

  • The Mirror Test and Canine Response
    “Life is too short just to have one dog.”
    The mirror test is often used as an indicator of self-awareness. This test shows an animal’s ability to recognize itself in a mirror as evidence of self-awareness. Dogs, however, have shown mixed results in mirror tests. According to studies conducted at the Canine Cognition Center at Yale University, some dogs react to their reflections as if interacting with another dog. In contrast, others seem to understand that the image in the mirror is themselves.
  • Social Cues and Emotional Intelligence
    “Dogs have a way of finding the people who need them.”
    One of the most compelling aspects of shelter dogs is their emotional intelligence. A study was published in the journal “Animal Cognition” that found that dogs can understand and respond to human cues. They are adept at reading human emotions and responding with empathy. This suggests a level of self-awareness where they not only understand their own emotions but also comprehend and react to the emotions of those around them. This connection between emotional intelligence and self-awareness hints at the depth of their consciousness.
  • The Canine Sense of Self
    Like any other dogs, shelter dogs exhibit behaviors that imply a certain level of self-awareness. They respond to their names, react differently to familiar and unfamiliar faces, and even show embarrassment or guilt when caught misbehaving. These behaviors suggest that dogs sense themselves as individuals with distinct experiences and emotions.
  • Shelter Dogs and Self-Awareness
    “Saving one dog might not change your world, but surely for that one dog, their world will change forever.”
    Shelter dogs often undergo significant transformations from the streets to loving homes. They learn to trust, bond with humans, and adapt to new environments that make shelter dogs exhibit resilience and adaptability. This evolution showcases their ability to understand their circumstances and adjust their behaviors accordingly. As shelter dogs build connections with their caregivers and learn to navigate their surroundings, they display traits that align with self-awareness.
  • The Emotional Mirror
    “A dog’s bond is as lasting as the ties of this earth can ever be.”
    When we look into the eyes of a shelter dog, we often see a reflection of our own emotions. The Human Animal Bond Research Institute (HABRI) highlights that dogs can remarkably mirror human emotions and moods. Their ability to comfort, empathize, and respond to our moods underscores their emotional depth. This connection goes beyond instinct and suggests an awareness of the emotional states of themselves and those around them.
  • The Spectrum of Awareness
    “Just like humans, dogs have dreams too.”
    Just as in humans, the spectrum of self-awareness likely varies among individual dogs. Some may possess a heightened sense of self, while others might operate more instinctually. Having experienced the challenges of the streets and the warmth of a loving home, shelter dogs may demonstrate a unique blend of survival instincts and emotional responsiveness.

Dogs in India: A Special Bond

In India, where the bond between humans and dogs is deeply cherished, the concept of self-awareness in dogs holds special relevance. According to the Indian Pet Market Overview, over 600,000 pets, including dogs, are adopted annually in India. This highlights the growing awareness of pet welfare in the country. As the number of pet owners and shelters like yours, Nishabd continues to rise, understanding shelter dogs’ emotional depth and potential self-awareness becomes paramount.

“Dogs speak, but only to those who know how to listen.” – Orhan Pamuk

While the question “Are dogs self-aware?” might not have a definitive answer, the intricate behaviors and emotions exhibited by shelter dogs point toward a deeper level of consciousness. According to a survey by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), over 63 million U.S. households own a dog, reflecting the profound bond between humans and their canine companions. The connection is equally strong in India, a nation with a burgeoning pet-lover community. 

Sharing our lives with shelter dogs gives us a glimpse into their world – where love, empathy, and understanding exist without needing words. In their presence, we find a connection beyond mere companionship as they reflect the profound depths of their consciousness.

Read our Article: How to Stop Your Dog From Door Dashing: Tips and Techniques for a Safer Home

Diet For Stray Dogs

The Right Diet For Stray Dogs

The Right Diet For Stray Dogs


Stray dogs at corners of every street and many wonderful people selflessly try to help dogs by feeding them. While such acts are highly appreciated, it is always better to know what food items are good for the health of the dogs in order to prevent avoidable sickness.
The best foods that you can feed strays are boiled items like potatoes, rice and other vegetables. These are the easiest and essential meals. AVOID foods like biscuits, leftovers and milk which have ingredients like sugar, spices which put them at risk of diabetes and weight gain. Milk and certain dairy products also cause vomiting, diarrhoea as most dogs are lactose intolerant.
SAFEST foods that dogs will likely not have a bad reaction to include:
* FRUITS (apples/ bananas/ papaya/ pear)
* Packaged dog food (it is not the best food for strays and should be given in minimum quantity but if you don’t like to cook. Canned dog foods can be a good substitute for feeding strays)

Foods to AVOID:



Let’s keep this in mind when feeding our furry friends in order to help the in the best way possible!!


Vaccination of Dogs



Ms. Shirin Chhibber

If you are a dog owner you are probably already aware about how beneficial vaccines and sterilizers are for your pets, but it is not only necessary for pets but all dogs. Sterilization offers a path to lead a healthier life for dogs, with a hearty, robust and flourishing future ahead. Recent polls and researches have shown that sterilized dogs are less susceptible to certain diseases. Adding to that it is also a procedure through which forceful and excessive breeding can be avoided. But to learn the pros and cons of these operations we will first have to learn what happens in them. Let’s walk through the typical procedures of vaccinations and sterilizations.

Sterilization is a medical surgery which involves the removal of the reproductive organs, mostly performed on animals such as dogs. By this basic explanation we are able to understand that through this process, the reproduction of that animal is permanently stopped. It thus plays a crucial role in controlling the population of dogs. In male dogs the testes or testicles are removed this process is known as castration. Similarly, in females the ovaries and uterus are removed and through this the female dogs are ‘spayed’.

Vaccinations play the role of protection against deadly and almost untreatable diseases. Some common diseases that can be avoided in dogs through vaccinations are rabies and distemper. During vaccination procedures the dead bodies of the disease are injected into the animal to produce antibodies which helps in any consequential fight against the same. As a result, the immune system of the animal is strengthened.

The most common misconceptions about these are that they are painful and dangerous as well as costly. Sterilizations and vaccinations are the most common operations performed on animals. There are minimal risks if they are performed by a licensed veteran. Sterilization is performed under anaesthesia and additionally painkillers are given which means that no pain is felt by the dog. Most dogs are able to recover from both procedures in 24 to 48 hours. These are investments as they avoid future illnesses and the cost of them is not much considering they last a lifetime.

Both these procedures are required for a healthy population of dogs and the control of the same. In our colonies and homes sterilization and vaccinations are efficient means to prevent the spread of diseases and the overpopulation of stray dogs as well as pets. These procedures also bring about a change in the nature of the dogs such as their protective and aggressive instincts which often lead to violent fights are reduced. They are now also less prone to attacking over territorial clashes.

Dogs are territorial animals and are hence likely to attack in case of their relocation. Even if the population of dogs is relocated from a specific area there is high probability and scope for new dogs to migrate to the same place. In many regions the relocation of stray dogs has resulted in the increase of their overall population. So naturally this option is not ideal, instead sterilization and vaccination of these dogs is much better than to evacuate them from a certain area.

According to the World Health Organization, sterilization and vaccinations are the only scientific methods to reduce the stray population of dogs and ensure their health, and are suitable for implementing in developing countries. By taking these simple measures to vaccinate and sterilize the stray dogs in your neighborhood, the population of dogs becomes non- aggressive and rabies-free, as well as infertile which in the long run would decrease the stray population, not to mention this will play a huge role in abolishing the common stigma against strays.

dog lili



We have received this dog in such a condition where she was unable to walk. On 5th April 2020 with help of Mr. Lakshya from Rohini, Delhi we were informed about this case.

He came to know from one of his friend near his home about this dog who was dragging herself on road side. In response of this he went on the location where he noticed the dog in pain. In addition to this dog was not able to walk. He somehow coordinated with private ambulance driver and sent this dog at Nishabd shelter however it was difficult for him to rescue the dog due to pandemic.

Our medical team at Nishabd found that dog’s pelvis bone was broken while examining the dog. This female dog ‘Lili’ seems 3+ years old. We are trying our best to make this dog able to come out from this suffering as soon as possible. Therefore dog ‘Lili’ will stay at Nishabd for few weeks for regular care and treatment. Meanwhile dog need your support in terms of prayers to quickly recover.


Whistle !!

Whistle !! Please Stay at Home !!

While nation is lockdown to break the chain of #coronavirus. Many of us are working for Human safety as well as Animals and fendering for themselves. Here is our contribution to save the life of stray animal who are suffering in this pandemic with injuries. Last day we got sad news over phone from Mr. Yogesh about a 6+ years old stray dog at Ghaziabad in which a dog has been beaten up by few people.

He also had conversation with few people around there at the location in which he cleared the doubts that coronavirus doesn’t spread with dogs. When we brought the dog at our shelter we found some wounds on dogs hind legs and he was so scared of this Human behavior. But we made him feel safe here at shelter and we gave him food. Medicine has been given to this dog after cleaning the wound which will be given to him for few more weeks for complete healing of wound.

We have named this dog ‘Himmat’ after seeing his courage, however he was scared but there is no hatred in his behavior against humans as he is co-operative in treatment. Due to injuries he has lost some trust over human. At the time of his stay here at our shelter we will definitely build trust of this dog behvaour towards humans with love and care but he needs your prayers and support for speedy recovery. So please pray for the dog ‘Himmat’ for his recovery and we request all of you that dogs doesn’t spread coronavirus so don’t do any misbehaviour with them.

dog tutu



Whenever any injured and sick stray dogs are reported we extend them help with open arms as an animal welfare organization. We treat these injured, sick and needy dogs in our shelter and send them back to their location with their normal state of health. This is how we usually work.

This is Nishabd’s journey in which we have rescued more than 1000 sick dogs, treated them and sent them to their location. Today another dog joined this journey. It started with a call from brick shop located in Dadri. As usual without waiting for a minute our rescue team went to the location and found a destitute dog ‘Tutu’ who was few months old.

He had no one to take care of in this early stage of his life and was living alone. Sadly we came to know that ‘he has lost his family and came to this place last evening” when we spoke with few people who called us and working out there. In addition to this they also stated that when the dog came to this place dog seemed energetic but while playing he accidentally got in touch with burning “Bhatti” which used to make bricks. ‘Tutu’s’ hip got burnt which caused severe pain. It was not safe for him to survive in this place and find a cure for his pain.

We took the dog to our shelter and gave medical aid to the dog ‘Tutu’. But he needs to go through the regular care and treatment as well as several doctor visit in order to make its progress. Treatment and care are the most precisely resources to give him a second chance of life. We are lucky that our shelter brings lives to these innocent creature through our services. However this is not possible without the support of people out there who have donated us in pursuing our aim to give treatment to these injured dogs to make a better place for them.

Once again we are here to raise Rs. 8000/- for the treatment, stay, medical and doctor visit expenses of the dog ‘Tutu’. You can donate or sponsor his treatment.

dog jainy

Dog ‘Jainy’

Dog 'Jainy' is now recovered.

Dog ‘Jainy’ was lying near a closed shop with eyes bleeding at Burari, Delhi. When we got information about him on Facebook, Despite location being too far from our shelter we managed to rescue the dog as his life is precious.

Dog ‘Jainy’ appears to be 10+ years old. While doing his physical examination, it was painful to see his condition for our team. His left eye was injured badly. Probably he would have been beaten up by some inhuman. However after cleaning the wound carefully, we gave him medicine which helped him to bear the pain. We found his eye safe but he went through care and treatment for a week in Nishabd.

As ‘Jany’ has now recovered and is doing well, so we are sending him back to his location with best wishes from team Nishabd.

dog sweety

DOG ‘Sweety’


This is ‘Sweety’ 3+ years old female stray dog that was born in front of Ms. Sapna’s home in Mayur Vihar, Delhi. She is feeding this dog since then and taking care of this dog through thick and thins. Thus, this female dog is loved by her a lot and is energetic too.

Ms.Sapna and her neighbours take care of her as her own kid. The dog lives with her sister dog in a community park nearby.

Dogs are often adventurous and some are even fearless. The world is full of insensitivity that can harm these stray dogs. Many of the times they have to struggle for survival of food. Dogs are intolerant towards any new dogs in their location.

‘Sweety’ in this connection was involved in a fight last month with a new dog in her locality which resulted to bad injury. But, Ms. Sapna went around and found her after few days of incident where dog’s wound was infected badly with maggots. She took the dog to the Vet where maggots were removed by the doctor.

‘Sweety’ needed regular care and treatment to cure her wounds. Thereby dog ‘Sweety’ was admitted in Nishabd on 17th January by Ms. Sapna. Nishabd team started the dog’s treatment including regular cleaning of wound and medication Which was given to this dog for more than month.

Meanwhile dog ‘Sweety’ stayed in Nishabd and her wound was healed completely. As the dog is back to her normal state of health so we have sent her back to her location.

Dog Fulky



The dog 5+ years old female stray dog was found by Mr. Lakshya while feeding other street dogs living near his house at Rohini, Delhi. The dog was new in this location. In addition to this dog was suffering from Haematoma in his ear.

The dog was unwell due to pain in her ear. It was painful for Mr. Lakshya to see the dog in such a condition so he instantly took the dog to Vet. The Vet suggested for surgery of the dog. As surgery was must procedure in the case of hematoma so Mr. Lakshaya admitted the dog in Nishabd. The dog went through the surgery on 6th of february and was provided with the post operative care for a couple of weeks at Nishabd.

We have named this dog ‘Fulki’ and we have provided the dog with best of the care to make her able to to get back to her normal state of health.

Thereby the dog ‘Fulky’ quickly recovered and Mr. Lakshya took her back at her location.

Dog Changu



‘Changu’ 5+ years old stray dog lives on a street at Malviya Nagar Delhi. He is the sweetest dog of all as well as sensitive and loving. The dogs like him needs some affection and love. He is playful but since last few weeks this dog is suffering from sever skin infection ‘Mange’. His neck and ear are moslty infected.

But he was fortunate that he went under the care of Ms. Shipra and her friends when they found him in that location and tried their best by taking him to Vet. After the examination by vet it was found that he needs treatment with regular care for his skin infection caused by staying on roads. Thereby she sent this dog to our Nishabd shelter.

The dog is under going treatment and we hope within few weeks of treatment dog ‘Changu’ will be doing better than before by gaining the recovery. Please come forward to help him by doing prayers for ‘Changu’ to get better.