Dogs have been man’s best friends for many years. This documentary is a testament to this statement; a sweet reminder that dogs love humans as much as humans love them. The science behind this connection, surprisingly, hasn’t been explored much until recent years. Domestication over eons seemed to have tamed a wild animal, into a loyal companion, and the reveal, to my colleagues and I, was fascinating.
Humans love puppies, sometimes arguably, more than human babies. Something about large eyes, and a wet nose appeal to us. But how did this bond ever start? The theory presented assumes that we domesticated wolves; at the time, they were natural companions. Day dwelling, social wolves shared their talents with our ancestors. This partnership plays a part in the pre-dog’s evolution, and many generations later, we have dogs. I find this somewhat hard to imagine, and yet, it is plausible and supported, for example, by the fox breeding experiment displayed in the video.
So as I sit at home and pet my dog (imaginary dog, the tangible one sits too many miles away), I question how on earth the Poodle, Chihuahua or Yorkshire terrier ever came to be; the variety of dogs present today is simply mind boggling. Take the pug for example, following the common rules of evolution, what would becoming a pug, in comparison to the wolf, be of any use at all? A mutation has happened; the dog adapts and takes its own evolutionary course, and becomes an animal that is weaker, slower, smaller, and commonly has a breathing problem. Don’t take my intentions wrongly, pugs are cute, I love pugs just as much as any other dog. Something about its evolutionary path, though, just doesn’t click for me.
So, a note to self: Some interesting reading over a Tuesday teriyaki lunch (more accurately, the attempt of one on my part), I would like to know the histories of the specific breeds next; a map of what happened at approximately when, and at what points humans must have intervened. When, where, why…how? The questions go on and on.
A documentary serves to answer, but from this experience, it gave me more questions instead, as I sit and write a little more curious as the days go by.