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Thread: Canis lupus familiaris : The domesticated dog. Several hundred breeds, but from where?

  1. #1 Canis lupus familiaris : The domesticated dog. Several hundred breeds, but from where? 
    Forum Senior Double Helix's Avatar
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    Dec 2020
    The Smithsonian Magazine reports on the DNA results from a 10,000 year old bone from Alaska (1). Found years ago and first thought to be from a bear, DNA analysis indicates it is actually from the oldest known domesticated dog found in the Americas.

    The story goes on to tell us the oldest domesticated dogs likely arose over 20,000 years ago from wolves in what is now Siberia. It is believed that some of the more docile animals were domesticated and later breeding gave rise to different kinds of dogs. A lot of different dogs!

    The AKC recognizes about 200 breeds, but the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) recognizes about 350 breeds. Why this difference?

    And where did all these various breeds come from? Since they are all the same species, can they all be crossbred to yield mixed breeds, or are there limitations? Can one of the smallest dogs (2), such as a Chihuahua, crossbreed with one of the largest, such as a Great Dane (3)?

    There would likely be some logistical issues involved with such a mix. One would think the larger animal would have to be the female to accommodate much smaller dog sizes. But are there other limitations for various reasons in crossbreeding all these different dogs?

    The Cat Fanciers' Association (CFA) recognizes only 44 breeds of cats. Dogs, it would seem, could eat cats for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

    There is a good reason why a dog is man's best friend. (Likely a woman's too!)




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