After watching The Science of Dogs documentary I realized a few things. Never have I once thought to myself that dogs are a man-made species. You don’t really think of those things too much. Personally, I am a dog lover and after watching the film I had no idea that humans actually cross breed dogs to make them a stronger and more successful breed. They are designed by us and for us. They are the ultimate human creation.
It blows my mind to know that there are about 400 breeds and counting. One species that looks like many, dogs are more varied in size and behavior than any other species. I never thought about how many different types of dogs there were. All humans are about the same size, some taller and bigger than the others. I find it so interesting how dogs mutate so quickly. Over the past generations, we have made them faster, smarter, and loyal. 80 percent of today’s breeds did not exist 130 years ago. That is a huge leap in evolution over a small period of time. That is a crazy number to think about. We call it eugenics. Eugenics is the quest for perfection of a species. It improves the populations by careful selective breeding. Imagine if other species could be perfected through selective breeding.
The dog is basically a mutant. Dogs have 2.4 billion letters and combinations called base pairs in their DNA. The sequence of theses letters make up thousands of genes that make up each unique component of a dog. 99.8 percent of all domesticated dogs are genetically the same, yet we see all of these different kinds of breeds. All the variation in size, shape and character are all because of a .2 percent difference in the genes. I cannot believe it takes that small of a difference to make that big of a change. It only takes just a small change in a single gene to influence the size of a dog. Dogs are an amazing species. We have created a loving best friend. This documentary was very informative and made me realize how diverse the species of dogs are. I now have a whole different perspective on dogs and what they are all about.