Why did dogs choose humans?


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I’ve been enjoying “The Divinity of Dogs” book. Its alternately depressing and uplifting. I just make sure I end the session on an uplifting movement otherwise I am sad the rest of the evening. The boys and I have discussed on our walks why dogs choose to align with humans. Cats have “loosely” aligned with humans but dogs are partners. Every time I see a shelter commercial on TV I have to turn off the television and reflect. The sad eyes kill me.

So why did dogs choose people. Certainly there was a time when our tools weren’t that great and we were not the rulers of the natural world. A dog will give its life for its owner, choosing that the owner live. Why is that? Why thousands of years ago did the first pre-dog (wolf) walk towards the fire and join the human clan?

Certainly we have changed their destiny where once there was one (wolf) type now there are 100’s. Dogs that ride in purses are the ones I don’t understand personally.

Why in the end did dogs choose humans?

The stories you find in the book (TDOD) and many other’s show a connection beyond the simple. Lassie, Rin-TinTin and other dogs have become Hollywood stars. The stories told about them were of dogs saving people.

We (the boys and I) have wandered that path a number of times. We’ve argued greater intelligence (ever see a dog trudge off to work on a Monday). We’ve argued love (that one is easy just read yesterday’s blog).

When I was a kid our Collie Macgregor lived three days beyond what the vet said he would just to say goodbye to my dad. My dad was his human and he loved my dad. He died the night my dad came home. But he got to his feet and went to his human and said goodbye. I’ve always wondered if that in the end was the only thing that kept him alive those three extra days.

I suspect we will never solve that question, why dogs choose humans.

.doc

Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

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