Which Pedigree Dog Breed for You?
Dogs.info recommends finding out as much information as you can about the breed of dog you are thinking about buying. Remember all dogs are different make the choice carefully and decide on the best breed which will suit you and your lifestyle.
The UK Kennel Club
(“KC”) is a kennel club based in London and Aylesbury, England. Founded on 4 April 1873, the club is the oldest of the world’s all-breed kennel clubs. It is the governing body for dogs in the UK and its primary objective is ‘to promote in every way, the general improvement of dogs’. It was the first official registry of purebred dogs in the world, and its annual registrations in the early 2000s average 280,000. The Kennel Club’s best known event is the Crufts dog conformation show, held since 1928, which attracts competitors from all over the world. Crufts is held every March at the NEC, Birmingham. The Kennel Club registration system divides dogs into seven breed groups: Hound, Working, Terrier, Gundog, Pastoral, Utility and Toy
. The Kennel Club currently recognises 210 breeds of dog.
Dog Breeds – The History
Scientists have debated over the history and evolution of the domestic dog for hundreds of years. Dogs.info gives you a summary of the most widespread and popular theories involed with the origin of the domestic dog.
Dogs today come in all shapes and sizes, this is believed to be a consequence of a vital point in evolution, that happened over 15,000 years ago – The Taming of the Grey Wolf. Scientists now believe that every dog breed is a descendant of the “Canis Lupus” – the “Grey Wolf“.
It is believed that because humans and wolves were both hunters, they would have known of each others existance. Humans could easily have come across an abandoned wolf cub and taken it with them. As this wolf grew older it would be less fearful of humans and therefore be semi-tamed. A semi-tamed wolf would have been highly valued by a group of humans, they would have benefited greatly from the wolfs hunting senses, and warning defences.
As the process of taming wolves was repeated the humans would have started to unknowingly selectively breed. They would not keep the wolves which showed aggressiveness towards them, they would have kept and then breed from the wolves with the most loyal and useful traits. Different groups of humans would have needed different traits in their wolves for their specific needs; size, coat length, hunting and retrieving ability of different animals, and guarding ability would have been some traits involved with the selective breeding process.
As time passed and more civilisations developed, the trading of dogs began, at this point the origins of many more dog breeds began.
Today all recognised dog breeds are placed in one of seven dog breed groups:
– Breeds originally used for hunting either by scent or by sight. The scent hounds include the Beagle
and Bloodhound and the sight hounds such breeds as the Whippet and Greyhound
Working Dogs – Over the centuries these dogs were selectively bred to become guards and search and rescue dogs.
– Dogs originally bred and used for hunting vermin. ‘Terrier’ comes from the Latin word Terra, meaning earth. This hardy collection of dogs were selectively bred to be extremely brave and tough, and to pursue fox, badger, rat and many more, above and below ground.
Gundogs – Dogs that were originally trained to find live game and/or to retrieve game that had been shot and wounded. This group is divided into 4 categories – Retriever, Spaniels, Hunt/Point/Retrieve and Setters although many of the breeds are capable of doing the same work as the other sub-groups.
– Herding dogs that are associated with working cattle, sheep, reindeer and other cloven footed animals. Usually this type of canine has a weatherproof double coat to protect it from the elements when working in severe conditions.
Utility – This group consists of miscellaneous breeds of dog mainly of a non-sporting origin. The name “Utility” basically means fitness for a purpose and this group consists of an extremely mixed and varied bunch, most breeds having been selectively bred to perform a specific function not included in the sporting and working categories.
– Small companion or lap dogs. Many of the Toy breeds were bred for this capacity although some have been placed into this category due to their size.