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The Domestication, Behaviour and Use of the Dog

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Part of the Animal Welfare book series (AWNS,volume 4)

Abstract

The wolf was domesticated and became the dog more than 15,000 years ago. Since then dogs have been used by humans for many purposes. Initially they probably assisted humans during scavenging and hunting and acted as sentinels. Later they were used to to guard and to drive livestock. More recently the dog is being used for an ever increasing range of activities and it has become a close companion for many people. The social behaviour of the dog makes it suitable as a companion but its need to live in a group may be compromised when individual dogs live with busy people in modern postindustrial societies. The welfare of working and sporting dogs may be compromised at work but for many of them work is a positive experience. Police, military, racing and hunting dogs may be injured during training or work. Gundogs may be shot by accident. Dogs used for fighting are often seriously injured and killed. This is an unacceptable use of dogs even if the breeds used to fight are game to do so. In some countries dogs are eaten and their welfare may be compromised by inadequate management particularly during marketing and slaughter. The welfare of guide dogs for the blind and other assistance dogs is generally high. Dogs used for showing may be modified surgically to meet breed standards. Tail docking, ear cropping and dew claw removal are common practices in some countries for specified breeds. There is a dearth of information on the longevity and health of working and sporting dogs and on the stress experienced by these animals during training and work.

Keywords

  • Kennel Club
  • Doberman Pinscher
  • Tail Docking
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Young Wolf

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4020-4362-8_1
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© 2007 Springer

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(2007). The Domestication, Behaviour and Use of the Dog. In: The Welfare of Dogs. Animal Welfare, vol 4. Springer, Dordrecht. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-4362-8_1

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