What Is A Dog?

What is a dog all about? We know they're complex animals and are about as versatile as any creature on earth. On top of that, they, along with the domesticated house cat, make the most wonderful, loving, entertaining and companionable pets on this earth! I've owned them both for over 65 years so I know and feel what I say.

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Above: In the ocean near Sussex, England, adopted Golden Retriever
"Georgie" and adopted Black Lab Mix "Jessie" romp and play all afternoon.

A Little About The Dog

What is a dog? Dogs are the eyes and ears for the blind and deaf. They are therapy for the shut-ins and disabled and can be a best buddy for a ten year old. Dogs will comfort and soothe an elderly widow or pull sleds loaded with medicine through snow and ice. They perform search and rescue when avalanches bury people and towns and can hunt and track lost hikers, locate missing bodies and find babies buried in the rubble of fallen buildings. Dogs can sniff out illegal drugs and bombs buried in hiding places. They track the worst of criminals and help fight wars as well as guarding you, your kids and your property to the death.

Dogs will bring joy and companionship to a family, even when the family consists of only one lonely person. They are a status symbol to royalty or they can make you smile when you’re totally down and out. They don’t care what color your skin is or what language you speak or what country you live in. Dogs don’t even care if you/re flat broke or have a trillion dollars. They don’t care if your name is Bill Gates or Earl the “homeless guy in the alley behind the bar.” They will stand by them all to the end. Long live man's best friend! That's what a dog is.

All a dog asks for in return is our love and kindness.

There is no other animal on the face of the earth that can do what these wonderful canine friends can do.

A Maltese/Shih Tzu MIX giving wet kisses.
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What is a dog? The dog, as most people know, descended from the wolf. It was, according to some, domesticated roughly 25,000 years ago and since then, there have been at least 400 breeds bred world wide. The smallest of all the breeds is the tiny teacup poodle. The largest is the Irish wolfhound. Believe it or not, the plain old mixed breed is by far the most popular breed in the world today! Forget your pedigree. The mutt wins out as the number one dog in popularity!

  • Dogs are sociable animals that MUST interact with their human owners and family. They can not be stuck in a back yard with a chain and left 24/7. They crave human or canine companionship the same as we do.

  • To chain a dog up in a yard and leave it is now viewed as animal abuse and in some states brings jail time and fines.

  • Dogs learn by association. Ever see a one get excited when he hears the can opener? It means his dinner is coming. Or, the jingle of car keys can cause a dog to run to the front door because he might be going for a ride in the car. Pick up his leash and see what he does! He knows it’s walk time just by seeing the leash.

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What Is A Dog? - A Doggie Routine

You need to know this about dogs: Puppies as well as adult dogs crave daily routines. Let your dog know you are boss! Tell s/he what time to wake up in the morning, when to eat breakfast and dinner, when to go outside for potty call, exactly what time to take the morning walk and so on. Then try to follow this time schedule every day. (as best you can) Your pup will love you for it.

You’ll be amazed at how obedient your dog will become. She’ll suddenly be waiting for you at the door when it’s time to go for a walk or out to potty!

  • Include training in the routine. It’s a known fact that a dog wants to please his/her human and takes great pleasure out of training sessions.

  • Bonding - One of the best ways to bond with your pooch, and he with you, is through obedience dog training.

This Airedale had a bath and is shaking the water off.
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Here's a lighthearted "fun" site to visit
that is interesting and educational too.
Dogs Gossip

Did you know canines use distinct body language?

  • When a dog wants to play, she will lay both front paws spread out in front of her on the ground and rest on her elbows with her rear end sticking up in the air, head down at the ground. Every other dog around knows she’s ready to play.

  • A submissive dog may, when being approached, tuck her tail between her legs, crouch down, and possibly even roll on her back to expose her tummy as if to say “I give up.”

  • Angry dogs. They bare their teeth, stick their tail in the air, put the ears forward, become rigid and you may see the whites of her eyes.

  • A really happy, excited pooch will run in circles, jump up and down, bark and probably run over and lick you on the face.

  • A depressed dog sleeps all day, has no interest in anything or anyone, won’t eat and doesn’t want to play.

    Yes, dogs are plenty emotional, just like people.

What is a dog? A Border Collie herding sheep.
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What Is A Dog? - Canine Priorities

Dogs have two primary items in their agenda. Food and safety. When a new dog comes to live with you, the FIRST thing he will worry about is “am I going to be safe here?”

  • Win a new dog's confidence with little bits of food. If the new dog is shy or scared in his new house, little bits of tasty food (treats) will win him over.

  • The food is comforting and as you give it to the dog, he sees you as a friend and source of GOOD things.

  • A shy dog must learn to trust you. Food without harm is the way it's done.

  • Dog training is a priority and should start with the breeder and continue throughout the dog’s life.

  • MOST of the training will take place by the time the dog is 6 to 8 months old.

A Yorkie and a kitty sharing life together.
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What Is A Dog? - Dog Abuse

Unfortunately, animal abuse is a reality and millions of dogs suffer horribly. Dogs are tormented by juveniles who just don’t realize or care how horrible they are acting and how much pain they're inflicting. They don't understand dogs and they don''t realize dogs feel pain.

Adults are just as mean and hateful. Animal cruelty has been on the rise for a long time, world wide. Dogs suffer terrible pain and the animal rescue teams only get a few of the dogs before they die.

Here's a seeing-eye dog ready to guide his blind master away from danger.

What Is A Dog? - Dog Have Feelings Too!

What is a dog? A dog is as close to a human without a thumb as an animal can get and still be an animal. The dog is emotional, knows what s/he wants, likes and does not like and loves to laugh and play (dog style) just like we humans. Dogs have feelings just like humans. They get depressed, happy, they grieve, they become sad, lonely and frustrated just as we do. They morn the loss of another dog and they morn the loss of one of their humans. And, they DO feel pain, even though they can’t say anything.

Another important subject not mentioned is that of dogs and kids Any time you put dogs together with kids, there is the potential for trouble even though dogs were invented because of kids. (And seniors)

What is a dog? A dog is part of your family, your life and your home. The dog should share your sofa, every room of the house and play at will in the yard. Learn all you can about dogs if you plan on getting one. Plan on having it roam around your house and share your space with you. Otherwise, you don’t need the dog. Domestic dogs need lots of human contact.

"I surrender, but I didn't do it!
I'm innocent! I would never steal food from your table!

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What Is A Dog? - Dogs love to be played with!

Most dogs love the water. Pick a warm summer day and turn on the hose. Either fill a kiddie swimming pool or take the hose and squirt it about the yard. Your dog will love to jump in the shallow pool or play in the stream from the hose. Invite the neighboring dogs over for a pool party.

If you have more than one dog, it’s a good idea to have at least two people supervising.

You can also play fetch indoors if you have a fairly long hallway. You just need a small ball, such as a tennis ball (or smaller) will do fine

Dogs like to be handled. Between runs through the hose or dips in the pool, give the dogs plenty of rub downs, roll over's and tummy rubs. Scratch behind the ears and give chest rubs. Show them a real fun day in the yard! They’ll all take naps afterword.

About Dogs - World Population Of Dogs As Pets

What Is A Dog gives you some statistics according to the ASPCA. Here are some rough figures of world ownership of dogs held as PETS as of 2006:

North America = 68 million

Russia and France, just over 10 million each.

Italy and Germany, 5 million each.

Spain and Australia, 3 million each.

Belgium and The Netherlands, 1.6 Million each.

United Kingdom and Japan, over 7 million each.

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