DOGS - INTRODUCTION


Dog, mammal generally considered to be the first domesticated animal. This trusted work partner and beloved pet learned to live with humans more than 14,000 years ago. A direct descendant of the wolves that once roamed Europe, Asia, and North America, the domestic dog belongs to the dog family, which includes wolves, coyotes, foxes, and jackals. Dog ancestry has been traced to small, civet-like mammals, called miacis, which had short legs and a long body and lived approximately 40 million years ago.


The evolving relationship between the domestic dog and humans has been documented in fossil evidence, artifacts, and records left by earlier civilizations. Prehistoric dog skeletal remains, excavated from sites in Denmark, England, Germany, Japan, and China, indicate the early coexistence of dogs with people. An ancient Persian cemetery, dating to the 5th century bc, contained thousands of dog skeletons. Their formal burial and the positioning of the dog remains reveal the esteem in which the ancient Persians held their dogs. The relationship shared by dogs and humans also is evident in cave drawings, early pottery, and Asian ivory carvings that depict dogs. A statue of Anubis, the half dog, half jackal Egyptian god, was discovered inside King Tutankhamen’s tomb, constructed in about 1330 bc.

Literary references to the dog include those found in the Bible and in the Greek classic the Odyssey by Homer. In 1576 an English physician and dog fancier, John Caius, wrote a detailed text on dog breeds, Of English Dogges. Dogs are featured in tapestries that were created in the Middle Ages (5th century to 15th century), and in the work of many artists, including 17th- and 18th-century European painters Peter Paul Rubens and Thomas Gainsborough.

Although it is not known how humans and dogs first learned to coexist, people soon discovered the many ways dogs could enrich their lives. Dogs have been used to hunt for food, herd animals, guard livestock and property, destroy rats and other vermin, pull carts and sleds, perform rescues, and apprehend lawbreakers. They have been used during wartime as sentinels and message carriers. Today trained dogs are used to alert deaf people to common household sounds, such as the ringing telephone or doorbell; guide the blind; or retrieve objects for quadriplegics. Perhaps the most common of the many roles served by the domestic dog, however, is that of companion. As animals with strong social tendencies, dogs typically crave close contact with their owners. And people tend to form loving bonds with dogs. This companionship often helps to ease the pain and isolation of the elderly or people whose physical or mental health requires long-term convalescence or institutionalization.

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DOGS:


INTRODUCTION
PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS
REPRODUCTION, BIRTH, AND THE YOUNG
DOG BREEDS
DOG BEHAVIOR
CARING FOR A DOG
TRAINING YOUR DOG
DOG SHOWS


Herding Dogs
Hounds
Nonsporting Dogs
Sporting Dogs
Terriers
Toy Breeds
Working Dogs



DOGS FAMILY:


INTRODUCTION
PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS
REPRODUCTION
TYPES OF CANIDS
SOCIAL BEHAVIOR
HUMANS AND THE DOG FAMILY



DOGS RACINGS:


INTRODUCTION
MODERN RACING
HISTORY



DOGS SHOWS AND TRIALS:


INTRODUCTION
DOG SHOWS
OBEDIENCE TRIALS
FIELD TRIALS



DOGSLEDDING:


INTRODUCTION
DOGSLEDDING FUNDAMENTALS
EQUIPMENT
TRAINING AND CARING FOR THE DOGS
DOGSLED RACING
GOVERNING BODIES
HISTORY



WOLVES:


INTRODUCTION
Coyote
Gray Wolf
Red Wolf



FOXES:


INTRODUCTION
THE RED FOX
OTHER FOXES
Fennec, African fox
Fox Hunting
Red Fox

Dogs Home