Domestic Dogs

3705 WordsApr 20, 201315 Pages
The domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris)[2][3] is a subspecies of the gray wolf (Canis lupus), a member of the Canidae family of the mammalian order Carnivora. The term "domestic dog" is generally used for both domesticated and feral varieties. The dog has been the first animal to be domesticated[4] and has been the most widely kept working, hunting, and pet animal in human history. The word "dog" may also mean the male of a canine species,[5] as opposed to the word "bitch" for the female of the species. MtDNA evidence shows an evolutionary split between the modern dog's lineage and the modern wolf's lineage around 100,000 years ago but, as of 2013, the oldest fossil specimens genetically linked to the modern dog's lineage date to…show more content…
A few animals have "dog" in their common names but are not canids, such as the prairie dog. The English word "dog" comes from Middle English dogge, from Old English docga, a "powerful dog breed".[13] The term may possibly derive from Proto-Germanic *dukkōn, represented in Old English finger-docce ("finger-muscle").[14] The word also shows the familiar petname diminutive -ga also seen in frogga "frog", picga "pig", stagga "stag", wicga "beetle, worm", among others.[15] Due to the archaic structure of the word, the term dog may ultimately derive from the earliest layer of Proto-Indo-European vocabulary, reflecting the role of the dog as the earliest domesticated animal.[16] In 14th-century England, "hound" (from Old English: hund) was the general word for all domestic canines, and "dog" referred to a subtype of hound, a group including the mastiff. It is believed this "dog" type of "hound" was so common, it eventually became the prototype of the category "hound".[17] By the 16th
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