History of Dogs

The dogs which are also known as best friend of man plays an important part in our society today. A great number of people own a dog as pet. The history of dogs goes back thousands of years.

By matching the DNA of dogs with grey wolves, we can conclude the origin of dogs. So, the dogs most probably came from the grey wolves. In fact, the genetic structure of dogs and wolves are ninety nine percent the same. There are many wolves like behaviors in dogs. For example, the dogs sometimes howl like the wolves. Dogs also like to chase preys like mouse, birds, squirrel, and cats. Another, dogs are social animals. They like to work as a team or pack. And, they would submit and follow the leader of the pack. Finally, dogs will naturally protect and mark the territory like the wolves.

At the beginning, the man hunts for food. The man is probably one of the best hunters. Like the man, the wolves are great hunters. Wolves are strong, agile, and smart. And, the wolves may work as a team like the man. He must have seen the potential of the wolves. Between ten thousands and fifteen thousands years ago, the man probably adapted a wolf cub. It is probably abandoned or orphaned. Since the wolf cub grew up with master, it became a tamer wolf.

Even though the wolf cub may grow up with master, there is a big chance to go back to the wild characteristics. We must have eliminated the aggressive breed. This is known as selective breeding.

At around 9,000 years ago, we have domesticated the livestock. We use the dogs as guardians, and protectors of the live stocks. In fact, there are drawings and paintings on the wall caves from 4,500 years BC. The dogs worked with men.

About 8,000 years ago, the ancient Egyptians adapted the Saluki. It is probably one of the oldest breed that is recorded in history. The dogs were used in hunting. Saluki is an ancient Egyptians dog name which means noble. Saluki resembles a greyhound breed. It is lean and fast. It is a popular breed in ancient Egypt. By 5,000 years BC, the Afghan, Basenji, Dalmatians, Ibizan, Pharaoh, and Saluki were well established dog breed in ancient Egypt.

Although the dogs work with men, the Moslems and Jews consider the dog as unclean with the exception of Saluki. Moslems and Jews refuse to eat any catch if the food came from hunting with the dogs. Anybody should have reason to refuse. Dogs have rabies. It is a big problem during the ancient times.

Around 5th Century, the Greeks used fifty dogs to guard the fortress of Corinth. It was attacked. And, the dogs tremendously helped defend the fortress. In honor, the dogs were given silver collar and life pension.

After, the Romans rise to power. The Romans has become a powerful empire. They traveled across Europe. As they travelled, the dogs came along. The dogs breed with the local dogs. However, the Roman Empire did not last. After the fall of the empire, the dogs became unimportant. Many dogs were abandoned. The lost dogs formed a group or pack. And, they attacked the towns.

The Monasteries who breed the dogs for selective few saved the dogs. The dogs became expensive. Only the rich, wealthy, noblemen, priests, and parishioners can afford to own a dog. The dogs were so abundant at church that the dogs served as foot warmers for the priests.

Today, there are many breeds of dogs like sport, toy, terrier, hound, shepherd, pulling, and rescuing dogs. We breed the dog as how the dogs can be useful to us. We can train the dogs to do neat tricks and tasks.