Nobody knows when the domestication of gray wolves began. The contributions of these proto-dogs to human survival is clear though. Their tracking skills helped hunters, while their ability to sense predators alerted the community to nearby dangers. Native Americans even used dogs as pack animals before the introduction of horses. Through selective breeding, special skills like herding and pointing enhanced… read more →
The events at the Cincinnati Zoo made me realize that it is cruel to keep gorillas in captivity. My response is in this YouTube video. If you agree, please share and spread the word.
Snoopy and Lassie tell us a lot about the dramatic changes in the status of the family dog that began in the mid-twentieth century. Snoopy has his famous dog house. He lives outside. He is fed outside. This is consistent with the life of most family dogs up to the time that Charles Schulz began drawing his Peanuts strip. Dogs… read more →
There are heated arguments on both sides of this issue. A 2008 article in the journal Genetics sheds some light on the question. Investigators studied 148 breeds, looking for markers that might control behavioral stereotypes: herding, pointing, excitability, boldness, and trainability. Using dogs showing extreme examples of these characteristics they were able to tentatively identify the associated genes. More significant… read more →