Rewind, Then Paws: Seven Amazing Wild Dogs
Dogs have been welcome companions on humanity’s long journey from the Stone Age to civilization. From time to time, however, some of Man’s Best Friends decided a return to the wild was in their best interests. These 7 amazing wild dogs may be throwbacks to the earliest days of dog domestication but they also offer us a host of benefits… though on their own terms.
Indian Native Dog
(images via: From The Far Field)
The Indian Native Dog, also known as the INDog or Pariah Dog (though the term “pariah” is not pejorative in this usage) is the poster child for primitive dogs. Scientists and zoologists believe these dogs have changed very little, if at all, from the original domesticated dogs dating back over 10,000 years.
(image via: Alison’s Pune Blog)
Comparative studies have revealed almost no difference physically between INDogs and fossil dogs, including those found in the ruins of Pompeii. It can be assumed therefore that INDogs and the earliest domesticated dogs share both outward physical features such as yellow-ginger coats and behaviors such as strong loyalty, alertness to strangers and a readiness to bark.
It’s a pity the most many people know about Dingoes is either the notorious case of a dog-napped Australian baby or the classic Seinfeld episode which references it. In actuality, Dingoes are fascinating creatures: domesticated enough to have accompanied the ancestral Australian aborigines on their long and complicated journey to the Great Southern Land down under and wild enough to warrant their own taxonomic name – Canis Lupus Dingo.
(image via: Boadicea’s Chariot)
Fossil evidence of Dingoes in Australia dates back approximately 18,000 years though their images have appeared in aboriginal rock art created roughly 28,000 years ago. Dingoes are Australia’s apex predator and may have played a major role in the extinction of the continent’s native large carnivores such as the Thylacine, or Tasmanian Tiger. Dingoes can be trained, housebroken and kept as pets or shepherd dogs though this practice remains controversial since it affects the animal’s “natural” wild status.
The Askal, Aspin or Philippine Street Dog is much closer to ordinary stray dogs found around the world then to a relatively pure breed of wild dog like the Dingo. Even so, and allowing for a wide range of variation in size, stature and color, most Askals have strayed only slightly from their original archetypes who first arrived in the Philippines thousands of years ago.
(image via: Galimontalbo)
Askals have adapted to their lives as “street dogs” by being less territorial than most standard breeds and wild dogs. They tolerate other animals well and enjoy living on their own in the outdoors but humans who have made them pets state Askals are remarkably loyal companions who are very gentle with children.
The Carolina Dog or American Dingo has only recently been recognized as a distinct, naturally-selected wild dog. First described by Dr Lehr. J. Brisbin in the 1970s, Carolina Dogs are native to the swamps and pine forests of the American Southeast. People from that area of the country almost universally recall seeing these dogs but disregarded them as just another “yellow dog” stray.
(image via: Wikipedia)
Carolina Dogs are medium-sized dogs who usually sport short, fawn-colored coats and may have darker fur on their faces. Their ancestors may have been brought to North America by the first Native Americans as fossil dog remains found in connection to archeological sites closely resemble the physiological structure of Carolina Dogs.
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