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Have you ever wondered how our best friends came to be our best friends? Or what is the dog history timeline and how dogs have benefitted the human race? Why did we keep dogs as our loyal companions throughout the years?
There are many questions to be answered about our furry friends. Many factual pieces of evidence float around the Internet. However, you will get all the answers you need to learn more about your furry friend or maybe why you should get one!
Quick History Of Domesticated Canines
According to the History World, the domestication of animals started during the most recent Ice Age about 20,000 to 10,000 years ago. Mammals as big as mammoths were large enough to undermine two types of hunters, humans, and wolves.
They are weaker and smaller prey, which makes it easier for larger mammals to hunt them with ease. As packs of wolves and a group of humans share similarities due to their family-based approached, wherein a group was led by a male with a female who would be second in command.
If you have watched The Jungle Book, one of the members of the Indian wolf pack, who took care of Mowgli, who had a say was a female, Akela. Wolves also had a similar approach to parenthood as humans. They would also take care of their young and protect it just like we do.
Furthermore, both species, although different, can readily recognize emotions and moods through facial expressions and most of the time, body language.
How Did Our Early Ancestors Benefit From Wolves?
During the Ice Age, life would be very different from it is today. This was the time our ancestors were hunters and not gatherers. There were tools that they created, but sometimes it wasn’t enough and would go on days or weeks or even months with no food.
However, when wolves and humans teamed up, the humans were able to benefit with more food on the “table”. This means it would be easier to get a larger supply of food, which was an advantage to both the humans and wolves as they are natural hunters. Don’t feel bad, though! Our ancestors were able to help the wolves hunt by using the tools they built like spears to take on larger preys as big as mammoths.
What Is The Evidence For This?
Although many do not know where the dog history timeline starts, the earliest known domestication, however, was found to be 12,000 years ago when archaeologists found a jawbone in an excavated Iraqi cave.
According to the findings, the jaw had smaller teeth and a small jawbone structure, which led scientists to believe that selective breeding took place. Think about it this way, if a wolf had puppies and one or two of those puppies are more approachable and do not harm the humans, they would probably be kept, right?
This is what exactly happened. So as more of these types of pups were there, the easier it would be for our ancestors to keep them and breed them later on, especially if they have favorable characteristics that helped the humans to survive.
Did You Know Our Furry Friends Were Considered A God?
Before the Iraqi cave discovery, Egyptians, Assyrians and even as old as the Romans have shown the different forms and sizes of dogs all throughout our history. When Egypt was still bustling with pharaohs, evidence from their paintings revealed that they had a god represented by a dog called Anpu or Inpu.
Anpu in Egyptian and Anubis in Greek was an ancient god who was known as the guardian of the dead. According to Ancient Egypt history, he was the original God of the Underworld compared to the Hades that we recognize today. Amazing stuff, isn’t it? Maybe this is why if you reverse the word “dog”, it would be spelled “god”.
What Other Benefits Did Our Ancestor Get From Dogs?
Well, there are many things that dogs did for us to help us survive. Beyond helping our early ancestors to hunt and get food, they also help protect us. If another group of humans was to enter the territory of other humans with dogs, the dogs would immediately alert their owners by barking or howling, which is partly how the human civilization survived.
In some textbooks, it is even written that Romans, especially ladies, had lap dogs, like a Maltese, to help keep their stomachs warm to cure stomach aches. However, during the Roman time, dogs weren’t always considered a man’s best friend. Dogs were also a form of entertainment that fought other types of animals or even humans. Also, some of you may not believe it because I certainly did not at first, but ancient Italy used dogs as a sacrifice to gratify the gods.
However, a Roman writer mentioned that dogs were used depending on the color of their fur. He wrote that white dogs were used as shepherd dogs to help distinguish them from the wolves in the dark while dogs that had black coats were kept in the farmyard to frighten thieves.
What Do We Know About Dogs Today?
In a research study, they believe that dogs were probably one of the first animals to become domesticated and explained that dogs have human-like tendencies compared to any other species, even nonhuman primates included!
In today’s society, dogs are used everywhere from drug-sniffing dogs to military dogs to therapy dogs, the opportunities for them are endless. There are even numerous studies about the benefits of owning a dog and how they can help relieve stress and anxiety even extend your life, according to Robyn Yackulich.
Throughout the dog history timeline, our barking companions have gone through good and rough times, and they still haven’t left our sides. Dogs have proven to be more than just companions, even Sir John Lubbock of the Parliament back in 1870 said, “That the dog is a loyal, true, and affectionate friend must be gratefully admitted, but when we come to consider the psychical nature of the animal, the limits of our knowledge are almost immediately reached”.
We focus on the breed of the dogs and where it originates, but as unbelievable as it may seem, all dogs descend from wolves. So, if you own a dog, just think, it’s partly wolf! Give your fur ball a hug for helping save our existence and for staying by our side!
Read more: Best Dogs For First Time Owners