GENERAL HISTORY OF DOGS
The dog wasn't greatly valued in Palestine, and in both the Old and New Testaments it is often spoken of with scorn and contempt within an"unclean beast." The recognizable reference into the Sheepdog from the Book of Job"But now they that are younger than I have me in derision, whose fathers I would have disdained to put with the dogs of my flock" is not without a suggestion of contempt, and it is significant that the only biblical allusion to the dog 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 dog with them."
There is not any incongruity in the concept that in the first period of man's habitation of this world he left a friend and companion of some sort of aboriginal representative of our modern dog, and that in return for the aid in protecting him against wilder animals, and in safeguarding his goats and sheep, he gave it a share of his food, puppy beds a corner in his dwelling, and climbed to trust it and care for it. Possibly the animal was originally little else than an unusually mild jackal, or a ailing wolf pushed by its companions out of the wild marauding pack to look for shelter in alien environments. An individual can well conceive the possibility of this partnership beginning from the context of a helpless whelps being brought home by the hunters to be tended and reared from the women and kids. Dogs introduced into the home as playthings for the children would grow to respect themselves, and be considered, as members of the family
It's been suggested that the one indisputable argument contrary to the lupine relationship of the dog is the fact that all domestic dogs bark, even although all wild Canidae express their feelings only by howls. But the difficulty here is not so great as it appears, since we are aware that jackals, wild dogs, and wolf pups reared by bitches easily acquire the habit. On the other hand, domestic dogs allowed to run wild forget how to bark, even although there are some that have not yet heard to express themselves.
The presence or absence of the practice of barking can't, then, be considered as an argument in determining the question concerning the origin of the dog. This stumbling block consequently vanishes, leaving us at the position of agreeing with Darwin, whose final hypothesis was that"it is highly likely that the domestic dogs of earth have descended from just two great species of wolf (C. lupus and C. latrans), and from two or another doubtful species of wolves namely, the European, Indian, and North African kinds; from a minumum of one or two Southern American canine species; from several races or species of jackal; and possibly from one or more extinct species"; and that the blood of them, in some cases mingled together, flows in the veins of our domestic breeds.
The back of the dog is made up of seven vertebrae in the neck, thirteen in the back, seven at the loins, three cervical vertebrae, and twenty to twenty-two from the tail. In the dog and the wolf you will find thirteen pairs of ribs, nine true and four false. Every has forty-two teeth. They have five four and front hind feet, while outwardly the common wolf has much the appearance of a large, bare-boned dog, that a favorite description of this one would function for the other.
Nor are their customs different. The wolf's natural voice is a loud howl, however when restricted with dogs he will learn to bark. Although he is carnivorous, he'll also eat vegetables, and if ailing he will nibble grass. In the chase, a pack of wolves will divide into parties, one following the course of the quarry, the other endeavouring to permeate its escape, exercising a significant quantity of strategy, a characteristic which is exhibited by many of our athletic dogs and terriers when searching in groups.
The great multitude of distinct breeds of the dog and the huge differences in their size, factors, and general appearance are facts which make it difficult to feel they might have had a common ancestry. One thinks of the difference between the Mastiff and the Japanese Spaniel, the Deerhound along with the trendy Pomeranian, the St. Bernard and the Miniature Black and Tan Terrier, and is confused in contemplating the possibility of their having descended from a Frequent progenitor. Yet the disparity isn't any greater than that between the Shire horse as well as the Shetland pony, the Shorthorn and the Kerry cows, or the Patagonian and the Pygmy; and all dog breeders know how easy it's to generate a variety in type and size by analyzed selection.
In the early lands that are ancient, and normally one of the ancient Mongolians, the dog stayed savage and neglected for centuries, prowling in packs, gaunt and wolf-like, as it prowls now through the streets and under the walls of every Eastern town. No attempt was made to appeal it into human companionship or to enhance it to docility. It isn't till we come to analyze the records of the greater civilisations of Assyria and Egypt we find any distinct types of canine form.
The indigenous dogs of all regions approximate closely in size, coloration, form, and dependency to the indigenous wolf of these regions. Of this most crucial circumstance there are too many instances to allow of its being looked upon as a mere coincidence. Sir John Richardson, writing in 1829, observed that"the resemblance between the North American wolves and the domestic dog of these Indians is so great that the strength and size of the wolf seems to be the only real difference.
A further important point of similarity between the Canis lupus and the Canis familiaris can be found in the fact that the period of gestation in both species is sixty-three days. There are three to eight cubs at a wolf's litter, and these are blind for twenty-one days. They're suckled for two weeks, but in the end of the time they are in a position to consume half-digested flesh disgorged for them with their dam or even their sire.
In order properly to understand this question it's necessary first to look at the identity of structure in the wolf and the dog. This identity of structure may best be studied at a contrast of the osseous system, or skeletons, of those two creatures, which so closely resemble each other their transposition would not easily be detected.