There is no incongruity in the idea that, at the earliest period of man’s dwelling in this world, he made him a friend and companion of some kind of aboriginal representative of our modern dog, and that in exchange for his help in protecting him from animals. savage, and, guarding her sheep and goats, gave her a portion of her food, a corner in her abode, and grew to trust and care for her.
Probably the beast was originally little more than an extraordinarily kind jackal, or an afflicted wolf led by his mates from the wild marauding band to seek shelter in an alien environment. One might well conceive of the possibility of the partnership beginning in the event that some defenseless puppies are brought home by the first hunters to be cared for and raised by women and children. Dogs introduced into the house as toys for children grow up and consider themselves as family members.
Traces of an indigenous dog family are found in most parts of the world, with the only exceptions being the West Indies Islands, Madagascar, the eastern islands of the Malay archipelago, New Zealand and the Polynesian Islands, where there are no signs that a dog, wolf or fox exists as a true aboriginal animal.
In the ancient eastern lands, and usually among the early Mongols, the dog remained wild and neglected for centuries, prowling in packs, thin and wolflike, as it walks today through the streets and under the walls of all eastern cities. No attempt has been made to lure you into human fellowship or to improve you in docility. It is not until we proceed to examine the records of the superior civilizations of Assyria and Egypt that we discover any distinct varieties of canine form.
The dog was not much appreciated in Palestine, and in both the Old and New Testaments it is commonly spoken with contempt and contempt as an “unclean beast.” Even the familiar reference to the Sheepdog in the Book of Job “But now they are younger than me, I mocked me, whose parents I would have scorned to set with the dogs of my flock” is not without a hint of contempt, and it is significant.
that the only biblical allusion to the dog as a recognized companion of man occurs in Tobit’s apocryphal book (v. 16): “Then they both went out, and the young man’s dog with them.”
The large multitude of different dog breeds and the vast differences in size, points, and overall appearance make it difficult to believe that they could have a common ancestor. One thinks of the difference between the Mastiff and the Japanese Spaniel, the Deerhound and the elegant Pomeranian, the St. Bernard and the Miniature Black and Tan Terrier, and is perplexed to contemplate having descended from a common parent.
However, the disparity is no greater than that between the Shire horse and the Shetland pony, the Shorthorn and Kerry cattle, or the Patagonian and Pygmy; and all dog breeders know how easy it is to produce a variety in type and size from the selection studied.
To properly understand this question, it is first necessary to consider the identity of the structure in the wolf and dog. This structure identity can best be studied in a comparison of the bone systems, or skeletons, of the two animals, which resemble themselves so much that their transposition would not be easily detected.
The dog’s spine consists of seven vertebrae in the neck, thirteen in the back, seven in the loins, three sacral vertebrae, and twenty-two in the tail. In both dog and wolf, there are thirteen pairs of ribs, nine true and four false. Each has forty-two teeth. Both have five front fingers and four rear fingers, while externally the common wolf looks so much like a large, bare-bones dog that a popular description of one would fit the other.
Your habits are no different either. The wolf’s natural voice is a loud howl, but when confined to dogs he will learn to bark. Although carnivorous, he also eats vegetables, and when it hurts, he nibbles the grass. In pursuit, a pack of wolves will split into groups, one following the quarry trail, the other trying to intercept their retreat, exerting a considerable amount of strategy, a trait that is exhibited by many of our dogs and terriers when hunting in teams.
Another important point of similarity between Canis lupus and Canis familiaris lies in the fact that the gestation period in both species is sixty-three days. There are three to nine puppies in the litter of a wolf, and they are blind for twenty-one days. They are breastfed for two months, but at the end of this period, they are able to eat semi-digested meat expelled by their mother or father.
Native dogs from all regions come close in size, color, shape, and habit to the native wolf in these regions. Of this most important In fact, there are many instances to allow it to be viewed as mere coincidence.
Company Sir John Richardson, writing in 1829, noted that “the resemblance between the American wolves and the Indian domestic dog is so great that the size and strength of the wolf seem to be the only difference.”
It has been suggested that the only uncontroversial argument against the dog’s lupine relationship is the fact that all domestic dogs bark, while all wild canids express their feelings only for howling. But the difficulty here is not as great as it sounds since we know that jackals, wild dogs, and bitch-raised wolf pups get into the habit. On the other hand, domestic dogs allowed to run wild forget how to bark, while there are some who have not yet learned to express themselves.
The presence or absence of the barking habit cannot, therefore, be considered as an argument for deciding the dog’s origin question. This obstacle consequently disappears, leaving us in a position to agree with Darwin, whose final hypothesis was that “it is highly probable that the world’s domestic dogs have descended from two good wolf species (C. lupus and C. latrans). ” and two or three other dubious wolf species, the European, Indian, and North African wolves, at least one or two South American canine species, various breeds or jackal species, and perhaps one or more extinct species. “; and that their blood, in some cases mixed, flows into the veins of our domestic races.