Zorba, India’s first canine sent to track down poachers in the Northeast, died last night due to age and health related issues. The 12-year-old Belgian Malinois was a member of ‘K9’ Aaranyak, the country’s first wildlife crime canine unit.
Aaranyak is a leading wildlife NGO based in Guwahati. Its mission is to promote the conservation of biodiversity in Northeast India. In a statement, Aaranyak said Zorba breathed his last at around 10 pm yesterday (Monday) in Guwahati.
“We are deeply saddened to inform you all that Zorba, the first member of our K9 unit, breathed his last at around 10 pm yesterday in Guwahati due to age and prevailing health conditions,” the organization said.
Zorba, a Belgian Malinois, was the first dog sent to the country to track down rhino poachers.
With an eight-year career covering several rhino sanctuaries in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park, Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary and Orang National Park, Zorba was actively involved in anti-poaching operations.
During his many years of service, Zorba helped wildlife officials track down more than 60 poachers in the state and was fiercely involved in anti-poaching operations.
After being discharged in December 2019, Zorba was in intensive care in Aaranyak’s K9 unit. “Our prayers will always be with him and his contribution will always be cherished,” Aaranyak said.