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Sep 10

[ARCHIVED] Curious Canines! by Cody Rasmussen

The original item was published from September 10, 2021 9:15 AM to March 6, 2023 10:11 AM


"Now and then we hear the wilder voices of the wilderness, from animals that in the hours of darkness do not fear the neighborhood of man: the coyotes wail like dismal ventriloquists, or the silence may be broken by the snorting and stamping of a deer.”
-Theodore Roosevelt

How often have you heard the phrase “Man’s Best Friend?” How often have you been the one to actually say it? How many of us are even aware of the first time that phrase was actually used? Dogs have been a common feature of our lives for so long that they seem to be a staple of daily life. Walking down the street you will see various breeds of domesticated dogs. From German Shepherds to Chihuahuas, Siberian Huskies to Corgis. They are everywhere.


Many have forgotten though that our modern day companions were not always so. Once upon a time they were some of the creatures that we often had to fear, that of a now extinct wolf. Many of the modern-day descendants find their closet cousin in the canine family is the modern grey wolf.


The canine family, though, is full of various creatures besides the well known dogs and wolves. On the Australian continent there are the wild dogs themselves, the dingos. In Africa one can find an even greater variety ranging from the Jackal to the Hyena. There is also the endangered African wild dog that still roams the sub-Sahara. You can find the coyote in the regions of North America, and 12 different species of foxes all over the world in different climates.


Canines have been long held as a companion and guide to humankind for various reasons, from their sense of smell to their loyalty. Many of the achievements we have accomplished over the ages can be traced back to the aid we have received from these wonderful creatures. However we must always remember the roots of our companions, their ancestors: those wild canines.

“A man might befriend a wolf, even break a wolf, but no man could truly tame a wolf.”
-George R. R. Martin