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The Kanni is a rare variety of dog found in South India, in and around Tirunelveli, Kovilpatti, Kazhugumalai, Kileral, Kodangipatti, SIvakasi and Madurai. It is said that the name Kanni ( which means unmarried girl) comes from the fact that the dog used to be given as a gift to the bridegroom just before the marriage. Infact, it was in the list of dowry items offered to the groom.
They are usually of four colours, brown,  cream, black & tan and  brindle.
The Kanni is kept by families who do not sell them but may gift them if a promise is made to look after them well . They are not allowed to roam on the streets and brought up as pet animals. They are given a diet of milk in the morning, corn porridge in the afternoon and a "Ragi" porridge in the evening. Meat is given once a week or once a month only.
They are used mainly for hunting.

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The Kanni: A write-up from The Hindu