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Wild Things :: All About Dogs

Dogs are man's best friend. But if they're supposed to be your BFF, then you should know a lot about them, right? In case ya don't, here are some doggie tidbits for you to chew on.

Dogs - The Beginning of Dogkind

It is said that dogs came from a creature similar to a wolf called Tomarctus ("father of dogs"), which roamed the earth about 15 million years ago. Dogs first became pets for cavemen, while the Greeks used them for hunting and as guards. Romans traveled through Europe and brought their dogs with them. These dogs bred with the local dogs, and gradually many different breeds were created.

Dogs - A Breed Apart

Dogs are generally classified into seven different breeds.

  • Toy - Chihuahua, Maltese, Pomeranian, Pug.
  • Terrier - Miniature Schnauzer, Scottish Terrier, Yorkshire Terrier.
  • Hound - Basset Hound, Beagle, Bloodhound, Whippet.
  • Herding - Border Collie, German Shepherd, Australian Cattle Dog, Sheepdog.
  • Sporting - Golden Retriever, Labrador Retriever, Cocker Spaniel, Weimaraner.
  • Non-Sporting - Boston Terrier, Bulldog, Dalmatian, Chow Chow, Poodle.
  • Working - Boxer, Bullmastiff, Saint Bernard, Great Dane, Rottweiler.

Dogs - Docking and Cropping

Docking is removing all or most of a dog's tail. Cropping is removing part of the ears so they stand up. Tails are docked before a puppy is even three days old, while cropping is usually done within four months. Docking and cropping goes back hundreds of years. It was done to prevent injury to ears in fights and to protect tails from the underbrush when hunting. For some breeds, docking and cropping is mandatory by the breed standards. However, some countries like England, Australia and most of Europe have made it illegal because it's considered cruel.

Dogs - Did U Know?

  • The smartest dogs are the Border Collie, the Poodle and the Golden Retriever. The dumbest dog is the Afghan.
  • German Shepherds are known to bite humans more than any other breed.
  • For dogs, the nose knows. They have between 120 million to 300 million scent cells along their nostrils.
  • Many dogs have a sweet tooth and love chocolate, but it's poisonous for dogs!
  • Have you ever wondered why poodles wear pom-poms on their legs? Originally, the haircut helped the poodle to swim faster and the pom-poms were left on to keep the joints warm.
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