For the first time in Sri Lankan history, a wedding ceremony for dogs was held at Asgiriya, Kandy. The event had been organized by Sri Lanka Police Official Kennel Division (Headquarters).
The main aim of the wedding is to breed police (official) dogs and save foreign exchange, as about Rs 20 million is spent on importing dogs of high breed. The breeding process will be done under the supervision of the veterinary experts in the universities, with the assistance of the officers in charge of official police canines.
Twenty dogs took part in the wedding ceremony including German Shepherds, Rottweilers, Labradors and Doberman Pinchers.
The first couple to be registered was, Browson and Billy (Labrador), SP Sisira Weerakoon, Director of the Police Kennel Branch said.
The second couple was Conso and Jina (German Shepherds). The third wedding registration was for Ethos and Shira (Rottweilers).
After the registration, all the dog couples queued on a stage and were blessed.
The wedding ceremony was attended by Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police, H.N.B. Ambanwela, (Central Province) and several other police officers.
However Sri Lanka Police has come under fire from the countries cultural minister and the Buddhist organization ‘Sinhala Ravaya’ for organizing a dog marriage by placing them on a traditional ‘Poruwa’, used by the Sinhalese when getting married.
Despite the criticism, Police Headquarters issuing a statement said that the stand that the dogs were placed is not a ‘Poruwa’ but a ‘Dog stand’.
However, the statement also says, the Police department regrets if the move caused any inconvenience for any person or any community living in the country.
During the year 2011, Sri Lanka has spent Rs. 700 million to import dogs for the Police service from Netherlands, which the Police Department says can be cut down if the new dog breeding program succeeds.