Muthappan is a guardian god of Kerala people, and he is an aspect of Lord Shiva and Vishnu, and his famous temple is situated in Madappura. Lord Muthappan contains divine weapons like Bow, arrow and sword, and his vehicle is dog. He is particularly worshiped by the people in Kannur District of Kerala and Coorg region of Karnataka. During the performance of puja to Lord Muthappan, fish flesh would be offered to him. Even other religious people are entitled to worship Lord Muthappan in his temples, and they are allowed to partake with his holy Prasad items also.
Muthappan is the chief deity of the famous Theyyam dance, also called as Muthappan Theyyam, which would be performed in the popular Parassinikkadavu temple. Pujas would be done to Lord Muthappan by the Thiyyar community people of Kerala.
As per ancient legend, once the king of Kannur was very much worried since he had no child. He and his pious consort were ardent devotees of Lord Shiva. Once they saw a divine child, nearby a river and they took him home, and brought him up as their own son. The boy used to frequently visit the forest, and he looked like Swamy Ayyappan, who is also an incarnation of Lord Shiva and Vishnu. He used to take food along with the lower community people in the forest. His parents asked him to stop the practice of interacting with the tribal people, but the young divine child didn’t hear their words.
Due to that, his father Ayyankara Vazhunavar decided to punish him. But the boy showed his true form to his parents. Then they realized that the boy was an incarnation of the God, and asked apology to him. The boy then left his home, and went to Kunnathoor, since he was very much attracted with the natural beauty of that place.
He was worshipped by the local villagers of that place, and they have offered grams, coconut, and fish to Lord Muthappan. Due to that, Muthappan dwelled in Kunnathoor and made the place, as his abode. After some years, Muthappan went to the beautiful place Parassinikkadavu, and began to reside at that place. Lord Muthappan can be always seen along with a dog. In his temple shrines, Dogs are considered as very sacred, and we can see lot of dogs in his temple shrines. Nearby his shrine, two bronze idols of dogs are also found, which are considered as his Dwara Palakas, and people used to worship them along with Lord Muthappan.
After the preparation of the Prasad, it would be first offered to the dogs, which stays inside the temple premises, and then only it would be distributed amongst the devotees. Muthappan temples are constructed in Kannur and Kasaragod districts in Kerala and Coorg district in Karnataka. Sree Muthappan is famous deity in Kannur district and Kasaragod district of Kerala, and lot of devotees are visiting and worshipping him in his temples, and they are blessed by him.