Facts About Dogs
Dogs have a long-standing relationship with humans. Scientists have found archaeological evidence which suggests that dogs were the first animals to be domesticated, over 30,000 years ago, long before horses or any other animal.
Dogs have served and still serve multiple roles in the human civilization. While in earlier days, dogs served as companions for hunting, today a lot of families keep them as companions for the children or even elderly. They are a great companion for children, especially in single child homes and teach empathy, love and responsibility to children.
Here are some interesting facts about these lovable animals.
1. We share a 30,000 year history with Dogs
It started when wolves began scavenging food from humans. With time, humans started domesticating wolves and providing them shelter and food. The wolves in return helped them with hunting. Over 1000s of years, these domesticated wolves became the dogs that we have today.
In many cultures, dogs have been deified. Their role was either to guide the dead people into the other world or to guard the other world (like Cerebrus in Greek mythology).
2. Strong Sense of Smell
A dog’s sense of smell is from 10,000 to 100,000 times more powerful than humans. This is because they have more scent receptors on their nose. For every scent receptor that a human has, dogs have 50. Dogs with longer snout have more scent receptors and therefore have better sense of smell.
Bloodhounds with 300 million scent receptors have the best nose while bluetick coonhound, Labrador retriever and herding breeds such as the German shepherd follow close behind.
3. Sensitive Hearing
Dogs can hear sounds 4 times farther away than humans can. They can also hear higher frequency of sound and can easily differentiate between the various types of sound. Humans cannot hear sounds that vibrate at greater than 20,000 vibrations per second but dogs can hear upto 50,000 vibrations per second.
4. Police Dogs
Due to their strong sense of smell, dogs are used by the police to hunt down drugs, bombs, weapons etc that humans cannot smell. Dogs are trained to identify certain smells and ignore the rest. They are also trained on how to react to a particular situation like alert their partner about location of explosive.
Police dogs are trained to appear scary even when they bark or growl. Dogs like German Shepherds are most commonly used as police dogs.
A tracking police dog is also used to track down criminals using their scent.
5. 18 muscles for Ears
Dogs use 18 different muscles for moving their ears. Humans, on the other hand have only 6 and can move their ears very little, if at all. Dogs have a longer ear canal than humans and the muscles help it to fine tune the position of the ear canal to localize a sound and hear it more accurately.
6. Unique nose print
Just like humans have a unique fingerprint, dogs have a unique nose print. In fact the Canadian Kennel Club has been accepting dog nose prints as proof of identity since 1938!
7. Sealed Eyes at Birth
Dogs eyes are still developing when they are born. Therefore, their eyes are sealed shut when they are born to offer protection to the immature optical system from potentially dangerous objects. Bright light can also damage their eyes at this stage. They finally open their eyes after around 2 weeks of being born.
8. Two Sets of Teeth
Just like humans, dogs are born without teeth. The first set of milk teeth appear after 6 weeks. These fall out eventually and are replaced by permanent teeth.
9. Need to pass tests to Join Workforce!
Guide dogs and police dogs undergo a lot of training and need to pass tests before they are inducted. Breeds like Labradors are known to make one of the best guide dogs.
10. 400 breeds of Dogs
There are over 400 different breeds of dogs in the world and an estimated 400 million dogs in the world!
So, get one for your family!