It is generally known that our domestic pet canines are descended from wolves.
Experts argue,on the other hand, on just how long ago humans first started keeping canines as pets. A controversial new study suggests that dogs were domesticated more than 100,000 years ago. However, the most commonly held belief is that canines were domesticated after circa 10,000BC. Furthermore, it is only comparatively recently that different breeds of canines have started to appear.
Originally, all canines looked significantly the same, instead wolf-like, until we began to breed canines selectively. It is hard to believe today that a Yorkshire terrier and a Saint Bernard are both descended from wolves. Canines now come in more than 300 different breeds worldwide and the differences between certain breeds can be very pronounced.
No doubt early humans had no intention of creating breeds of dogs that appeared so extremely diverse to one another.Nevertheless, these people learned that, should you picked animals for their distinct characteristics, you could actually mix all of the features which were sought after in one dog. Initially these would have been qualities such as guarding, hunting and herding.
All breeds were produced with a specific objective in mind. The different collie dog breeds have been bred to herd sheep.Retriever breeds, spaniels as well as poodles were all selectively bred to become guard dogs. Many terriers were bred to hunt vermin. Even a pure pet breed such as the Cavalier King Charles spaniel, favored by royalty and bred to be companions of the rich and titled, were bred with an intention – to attract fleas that might otherwise prefer to settle on humans.
These days, the majority of canines are usually kept mostly as domestic pets, although many still work, such as sheepdogs, police dogs and guide canines. Breeds that were originally developed for a very specific purpose may no longer have any other role to fulfill than as a pet in modern society.But the original characteristics, selectively bred for many years, often still exist in these dogs: a golden retriever will still have an inborn wish to retriever and a border collie will want to herd its flock.
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