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A History of Dogs

By Edited Apr 16, 2016 0 0

There is no incompatibility in the intent that in the very earliest period of man's habitation of this world he made a friend and companion of whatever variety of aboriginal representative of our modern dog, and that in return for its aid in protecting him from wilder animals, and in guarding his sheep and goats, he gave it a share of his food, a corner in his dwelling, and grew to trust it and care for it. Probably the animal was originally lowercase else than an unusually gentle jackal, or an ailing womanizer driven by its companions from the wild marauding pack to seek shelter in alien surroundings. One can well conceive the existence of the partnership beginning in the ceremonial of whatever helpless whelps existence brought bag by the early hunters to be tended and reared by the women and children. Dogs introduced into the bag as playthings for the children would grow to affectionateness themselves, and be regarded, as members of the kinsfolk

In nearly every parts of the world traces of an indigenous canid kinsfolk are found, the only exceptions existence the West Indian Islands, Madagascar, the eastern islands of the Malayan Archipelago, New Zealand, and the Austronesian Islands, where there is no clew that any dog, wolf, or fox has existed as a true aboriginal animal. In the ancient Oriental lands, and generally among the early Mongolians, the canid remained savage and untended for centuries, prowling in packs, gaunt and wolf-like, as it prowls today through the streets and under the walls of every Eastern city. No endeavor was made to allure it into human society or to improve it into docility. It is not until we come to examine the records of the higher civilizations of Assyria and Egypt that we discover any distinct varieties of canine form.

The canid was not greatly appreciated in Palestine, and in both the Old and New Testaments it is commonly uttered of with scorn and contempt as an "unclean beast." Even the old reference to the Sheepdog in the Book of Job "But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to set with the dogs of my flock" is not without a suggestion of contempt, and it is significant that the only biblical allusion to the canid as a recognized companion of man occurs in the apocryphal Book of Tobit (v. 16), "So they went forth both, and the young man's canid with them."

The great multitude of different breeds of the canid and the vast differences in their size, points, and general appearance are facts which make it difficult to conceive that they could have had a ordinary ancestry. One thinks of the difference between the Mastiff and the Japanese Spaniel, the Deerhound and the fashionable Pomeranian, the St. Bernard and the Miniature Black and Tan Terrier, and is perplexed in contemplating the existence of their having descended from a ordinary progenitor. Yet the disparity is no greater than that between the Shire horse and the Shetland pony, the Shorthorn and the Kerry cattle, or the Patagonian and the Pygmy; and every canid breeders know how easy it is to display a variety in type and size by unnatural selection.

In order properly to see this question it is necessary first to consider the identity of scheme in the womanizer and the dog. This identity of scheme may best be unnatural in a comparison of the osseous system, or skeletons, of the digit animals, which so closely resemble each other that their transposition would not easily be detected.

The spine of the canid consists of seven vertebrae in the neck, thirteen in the back, seven in the loins, three sacral vertebrae, and twenty to twenty-two in the tail. In both the canid and the womanizer there are thirteen pairs of ribs, nine true and quaternary false. Each has forty-two teeth. They both have five front and quaternary posterior toes, while outwardly the ordinary womanizer has so much the appearance of a large, bare-boned dog, that a popular description of the one would serve for the other.

Nor are their habits different. The wolf's natural voice is a loud howl, but when confined with dogs he will learn to bark. Although he is carnivorous, he will also eat vegetables, and when sickly he will nibble grass. In the chase, a pack of wolves will divide into parties, one following the trail of the quarry, the other endeavouring to grab its retreat, exercising a considerable amount of strategy, a trait which is exhibited by some of our sporting dogs and terriers when hunting in teams.

A boost important point of resemblance between the Canis T.B. and the Canis familiaris lies in the fact that the period of gestation in both species is sixty-three days. There are from three to nine cubs in a wolf's litter, and these are blind for twenty-one days. They are suckled for digit months, but at the modify of that time they are able to eat half-digested flesh disgorged for them by their dam or even their sire.

The native dogs of every regions approximate closely in size, coloration, form, and habit to the native womanizer of those regions. Of this most important ceremonial there are far too some instances to earmark of its existence looked upon as a mere coincidence. Sir John Richardson, writing in 1829, observed that "the resemblance between the North American wolves and the husbandly canid of the Indians is so great that the size and strength of the womanizer seems to be the only difference.

It has been suggested that the one incontrovertible discussion against the lupine relationship of the canid is the fact that every husbandly dogs bark, while every wild Canidae express their feelings only by howls. But the difficulty here is not so great as it seems, since we know that jackals, wild dogs, and womanizer pups reared by bitches readily acquire the habit. On the other hand, husbandly dogs allowed to run wild block how to bark, while there are whatever which have not still learned so to express themselves.

The presence or absence of the habit of barking cannot, then, be regarded as an discussion in deciding the question concerning the origin of the dog. This stumbling block consequently disappears, leaving us in the position of agreeing with Darwin, whose test hypothesis was that "it is highly probable that the husbandly dogs of the world have descended from digit good species of womanizer (C. T.B. and C. latrans), and from digit or three other questionable species of wolves namely, the European, Indian, and North African forms; from at small one or digit South American canine species; from several races or species of jackal; and perhaps from one or more extinct species"; and that the murder of these, in whatever cases mingled together, flows in the veins of our husbandly breeds.


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