- Group – Hound
- Height – 23-26 inches at the shoulder
- Weight – 30-35 KG
- Life Span – 12-15 years
The Combai Boarhund has powerful jaws. In Tamil Nadu in the province of India the Combai looks similar to some of the Indian Pariah dogs, but it is stockier. Its ears are pendant shaped folding over to the front in a v-shape. The shorthaired coat comes in tan or red brown with a black muzzle. It can have a small amount of black coloring on its feet and ears and a dark coloring along its back. A white patch on the chest is acceptable. Less common coat colors are piebald and brindle. Piebald is called porru and brindle is called pullisaral in the Tamil language. The more common colors of tan, red or brown with a black muzzle are called Karuvaisevalai or Karumunjinaai in the Tamil language. The piebald and brindle coloring can occur in the same litter but it is rare.
The Kombai’s existence can be traced back to the 15th century and historically, they are known to have been bred to hunt wild boar, deer, and bison. Some breed enthusiasts and natives of South India believe that the breed existed even as far back as the 9th century. Kombais were used by the armies of the Marudhu brothers or Marudhu Pandias, who headed the revolt against the British subjugation of the Kalaiar Koil of the Sivakasi Kingdom at the beginning of the 19th century.
Kombais continue to be popular in South India and are celebrated as not just strong hunters but loyal family pets.
Personality and Temperament
Combais are athletic and energetic dogs, doing well in open surroundings rather than confined in enclosed places like apartments. Though aggressive to unknown people, they are modest towards their kith and kin, sharing a good rapport with children of the family.
Besides its robust guarding instincts, it is known for its loyalty towards its owner and his family. Such traits always motivate it to find out ways to please its master, and would not even think twice to give its own life to save its family.
Hair, Care and Grooming
The coat of the Combai is probably the breed’s defining characteristic, and indeed is what most separates the breed from other Indian dogs. Like most Indian dogs, the Combai has a short, smooth coat which both keeps the breed cool in the Indian sun and allows it to more easily find and kill parasites. The coat is generally uniform in length over the entire body but is often slightly shorter on the head, face, and fronts of the legs. The coat’s most important feature is a distinctive ridge of hair along the top of the back that grows in a different direction from the rest of the coat.
The Combai is a very low maintenance breed. This breed should never require professional grooming, only an occasional brushing. Other than that, only those routine maintenance procedures which all breeds require such as tail clipping and ear cleaning are necessary. There do not appear to be any reports as to the Combai’s shedding. It is probably safe to assume that the Combai does shed, although almost certainly very lightly.
Kombais are generally healthy dogs, but, like all breeds, they may be prone to certain generic as well as genetic conditions. Hip Dysplasia is a common condition amongst Kombais, where the thigh bone does not fit in snugly at the hip joint. Dogs will express pain or exhibit lameness in one or both hind legs, if they are suffering from hip dysplasia. This condition can be managed with medication if mild, and surgery if extreme.
Kombais are also prone to skin problems, with mange and dermatitis being the most common. The hot and moist climate in which they are bred is perhaps the chief reason for this. This climate is a hotbed for various bacteria and insects. Most skin ailments can be prevented with regular grooming and cured with medication. Kombais are also sensitive to anaesthesia, the breed’s low body fat percentage being the main reason for this. Ensure that you consult with a good vet and specifically check this problem out, especially if and when your Kombai needs surgery.
Training and Activity
Occasional exhibition of bad temperament to outsiders is not uncommon for them. Hence it is better to begin socializing them with your closed circles, friends, family members and relatives as early as possible. Ask your dear ones to visit your place from to time, and interact with your Combai pup. Let the children play with it, give it a treat from its snacks box, interact and talk to them, and so on.
Behavioral training is essential. Let your dog learn to differentiate between good and bad behavior. Begin with teaching the basic commands first, including stop, don’t go, come back, sit down, and so on, followed by treats and praises. The next time a friend comes in and your pup starts yapping, ask it to stop by uttering a shhh. As your dog looks at you, praise it, open the door and let your friend in, and give it a snack. This will help your dog associate with a bad behavior (being too defensive or protective) and good (obeying your command and getting a reward, instead).
Make leash a habit. Every time you move out, interact with unknown people at home, unlock your main entrance, let your dog learn to wear its leash.
The Jack Russell terrier is very adaptable and will exercise itself in a small yard, but it will be in its glory with space to run, hunt and play.
Like other large high-energy dogs, they would need around 3-5 cups of dry kibbles, divided into two regular meals.