What is a domestic dog?
A domestic dog is a species of canine that is commonly kept as a pet. All domesticated dogs are descendants of wolves, which is why they share many physical and behavioral characteristics.
There are two scientific names for dogs: Canis familiaris, which is the most common, and Canis lupus familiaris, which is a subspecies of the wolf. The first name refers to the fact that all domesticated dogs are members of the dog family (Canidae), while “Canis” means “dog” and includes wolves, dogs, coyotes and jackals. The second name highlights the fact that domestication has resulted in some changes in their appearance and behavior from their wild counterparts.
Dogs have been one of the first animals to be domesticated by humans–probably due to their scavenging habits and ability to adapt to living near humans. Dogs also have a subfamily called Caninae within their family tree.
Origin and history of dogs
History of dogs
Dogs are descended from the Wolf. They come in two species, Canis familiaris and Canis lupus familiaris, which is a subspecies of the Wolf. The subfamily is Caninae, or canines. Dogs are one of the first animals to be domesticated by prehistoric man.
Evolution of dogs
Dogs are descendants of a wolf species, Canis lupus, that went extinct but was Eurasian in origin. The break-off occurred between 15,000 and 30,000 years ago.
The journey towards domestication has been gradual and is thought to have happened over thousands of years. Wolves began eating human scraps and gradually evolved into dogs. Dogs were originally used to hunt and guard livestock, but over time they became an integral part of the human family.
Domestication of dogs began probably through a process of selective breeding, although that has been quite the topic of debate. Some say man came to the natural conclusion of altering wolves to a new species because hunting them was difficult, harder, and more time consuming than other prey. Others believe that dogs were more appetizing, docile, and tame.
Importance of dogs in human history
Dogs have been the symbol of guidance and protection for a long time.
Cerberus is the three-headed, dragon-tailed watchdog who guards the gates of Hades in Greek mythology. In Persian mythology, two dogs guard the Chinvat Bridge; in Welsh mythology, Annwn is guarded by Cŵn Annwn; and in Hindu mythologies, Yama owns two watchdogs who have four eyes. Dogs are also found to guard churches and churchyards. Jewish law does not prohibit keeping dogs and other pets. The Torah requires Jews to feed dogs before themselves. Muslims view dogs as unclean, but some schools of thought allow the trade and keeping of dogs as pets.
Dogs are members of the Canis genus, which also includes wolves. While there are many similarities between dogs and wolves, there are some markers that can help determine whether a canid is a wolf or dog. These include bone structure, behavior, and reproduction. Dogs have certain characteristics that distinguish them from wolves, such as their smaller size, domestication, and ability to bark.
Dogs are susceptible to the same diseases as humans, and researchers are now identifying genes that may be related to human disorders in dogs.
Some of the most common dog diseases are:
- Canine distemper virus (CDV) is a highly contagious viral disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal and central nervous systems. Symptoms of CDV include coughing, sneezing, runny nose and fever.
- Canine parvovirus is a highly contagious virus that affects the gastrointestinal system of dogs.
There are many ways to keep your dog healthy, including vaccinations, deworming, and proper nutrition. Proper dog care includes exercising and providing enough sleep. If you notice any changes in your dog’s behavior or health, it is important to take them to a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Just like humans, dogs need a balanced diet to stay healthy. Dogs are carnivores, so their diet should consist of mostly meat with some vegetables. There are many different types of dog food on the market, including wet and dry food as well as organic options.
If your dog is overweight, there are special diets available to help them lose weight. If your dog is underweight, there are also diets designed to help them gain weight. Talk to your veterinarian about what type of diet is best for your pet.
Dogs are a part of the family for many people, and as such, their behavior is important. Many dog owners may not be aware of some of the things their dogs do that can be classified as “bad.” For example, when a dog growls or snaps at another person or animal, this is considered to be aggressive behavior. Dogs may also exhibit dominance behaviors like mounting other animals or humans, or begging for food.
Some less common but still troublesome behaviors include separation anxiety, in which a dog becomes agitated and destructive when left alone; compulsive licking, which can lead to skin lesions; and coprophagia (eating feces). If your dog exhibits any of these behaviors, it is important to seek professional help from a qualified trainer or behaviorist.
Types of Dogs
There are many different types of dogs in the world. Dogs have been selectively bred for thousands of years to fill human needs and desires. Some breeds, such as the labradoodle, were created specifically to make dogs more desirable as companions.
Dogs have also been bred for specific purposes, such as working in cold climates or herding animals. Each breed has its own unique set of characteristics that makes it well suited for a particular task or environment.
Most dogs fall into one of five groups: sporting, hound, working, terrier or toy breeds.
Sporting dogs are bred to hunt different types of animals, such as birds or game. They often have thick, water-repellant coats which protect them from the elements.
There are many breeds of sporting dogs, and they can be found by name or by their physical appearance. Different breeds of sporting dogs have unique abilities and characteristics which make them well suited for certain tasks. For example, some breeds are better at bird hunting while others may be better at tracking prey on land. Some sportsmen prefer smaller dogs because they’re easier to transport and less likely to scare away quarry; others prefer larger dogs with more stamina who can cover more ground when chasing down prey.
The German Shorthaired Pointer is a versatile dog that is good at both scenting out game and retrieving downed birds; it’s therefore a popular choice for hunters. The Griffon Vendéen is also called the griffon vin de pays or just griffon, as well as grand basset griffon vendéen or simply basset griffon, which literally means “big hunting dog from vendée”. This breed is noted for its excellent sense of smell and ability to track prey over long distances.
The Irish Red and White Setter is an irish setter that was originally bred to hunt upland game birds such as grouse and pheasant. It has a lot of stamina and can cover a lot of ground quickly.
There are two types of hounds: sighthound breeds and scent hounds. Sighthound breeds are dogs that hunt their prey by sight, whereas scent hounds are dogs that hunt their prey by smell. The most common type of hound is the scent hound. Some well-known examples of sighthound breeds include greyhounds, whippets, and Irish wolfhounds. The most common type of scent hound is the beagle. There are many different types of beagles, including the American beagle, the English beagle, and the Harrier. Other popular scent hounds include bloodhounds and basset hounds.
Herding dogs were bred specifically to herd livestock. They are an intelligent and versatile group of dogs that can be used for military work, police work and the sporting field. The herding types are the fastest-growing dog breed in the United States and Canada.
Toy dogs are bred to be companions or pets. They have small size, typically under 6 pounds, making them perfect for urban living or those who live in a small house. The Affenpinscher is a breed of toy dog.
Popular Dog Breeds
Humans have domesticated dogs affecting every aspect of their history, alternative ancient archeological finds suggest that dogs were present on Earth from the earliest days of domestication, more closely resembling wolf-sized animals. The popular dog breeds that we can enjoy released from the burden of this history are a focus particularly in several cultures which give them special religious or spiritual attention.
The most popular dog breeds are the Labrador Retriever, German Shepherd Dog and Golden Retriever.
- The Labrador is a breed of dog that originated in Newfoundland, Canada. The Lab has a short coat which comes in black, yellow or chocolate. Labs are the most popular dog in America and have been for years. They are friendly, gentle dogs which make them good family pets.
- The German Shepherd is a breed of dog that originated in Germany. This large, black or tan animal was originally bred to herd sheep but has since become popular as a police and military dog.
- The Golden Retriever is a breed of dog that originated in Scotland. This yellow or gold colored animal was bred as a hunting dog and has become popular as a family pet.