Pawga: Inside India's First 'Pet Yoga' Experience

Pawga: Inside India's First 'Pet Yoga' Experience

The benefits of yoga are innumerable and have been an essential aspect of human life for thousands of years. Have you ever thought about how this ancient practice can help your furry friends too? Surprised? So was I when I first heard about Pawga. But read on to find out how Pawga has combined the beneficial practice of yoga with animal welfare to create what is a truly wonderful initiative.

The members of Pawga started working primarily at animal shelters. It was then that they realized getting a pet adopted is not an easy task, and in India, there is more importance given to imported breeds. Many people unfortunately still believe in the policy of shopping instead of adopting pets. As the entire world reeled from the pain of the pandemic, the animal shelters underwent a lot of suffering too. To tackle this suffering, a college friend trio, Sinduja, Subhashree, and Swathi started Pawga, India's first pet yoga experience, to help with adoptions at the shelter.

The idea is to not show sad puppies or ask for donations harboring the sympathy of people. Pawga decided to portray shelter pets in a different light. The organization encourages people to attend their 60-minute beginner yoga session, where puppies run around freely. A portion of the proceeds go towards animal welfare, and all the puppies are up for adoption, making every event an adoption drive.

Pawga falls in the sweet intersection between animal and human welfare. By spending time with shelter pets, the humans are helping the pets get over early-stage depression, which is common for pets growing up without individual care. The practice is complementary in nature as spending time with animals is therapeutic for humans.

When Pawga started, initially people were skeptical about the usage of yoga this way. Some criticized it to be a sort of western fad that they were bringing into the country. But as of today, Pawga has a growing community of more than 30,000 people. The initiative has resulted in a rapid acceleration in adoptions at the shelter. The fruit of their labor has blossomed as Pawga is now active in multiple cities such as Chennai, Bangalore, and Hyderabad, and will soon enter Mumbai, Pune, and Coimbatore.

You can find out more about Pawga here.

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