Dogs have a major effect in society as they have became domestic over time, affect their owner psychologically, and can save lives. Ever since I can remember, I have always had a dog. As an owner of two dogs, I can speak about the effects first hand.
Dogs have become domesticated over time. Dogs and wolves have similar genetics and DNA even though they are considered different species. According to Ruvinsky, A. (2001). The genetics of the dog. Retrieved October 13, 2018, from “An extensive survey of several hundred grey wolves and dogs found that the two species had only slightly divergent mitochondrial DNA control region sequences. ” According to Tiffany-Castiglioni, E. (204), not only do dogs and wolves have nearly identical DNA, but both species have nearly identical chromosomes.
The average difference between dogs and wolves is approximately 2%. When comparing the average difference between dogs and coyotes, their next closest kin, is 7. 5%. Furthermore, dogs and wolves can interbreed to produce fertile offspring. According to Lescureux, N. , & Linnell, J. D. (2014) this would reinforce the suggestion that dog domestication, at least in its first stages, was probably more a stochastic evolutionary process rather than one guided by human design.
Contributing to dogs being the first domesticated animal. Dogs and wolves are different “species” perhaps due to their very distinct habitats and behavioral characteristics. Wolves live in the wilderness in packs. In these packs there is one alpha male and one alpha female in a pack. Female wolves usually usually come to heat once a year. Where breeding takes place seasonally. Dogs live with humans. Female dogs usually come into heat once a year. Dog can breed more often. Domesticated species have the common characteristic.
Domestic dogs had begun to appear between 15, 000 and 10, 000 years Before Present. Domestication is the process of taming an animal. Domestic animals are easy going towards humans and often dependent on humans to survive. Domestic animals “fight or flight” adrenaline response is essentially lacking especially in the presence of humans. These factors contribute to dogs being known as the species Canis familiaris amd wolves Canis Lupus. There are many theories on how dogs have become domesticated.
According to Chon, J. (1997) It is presumed that dog domestication by humans began when humans captured wolf pups and raised them as pets (725-728). Captured pups would then be raised with a submissive trait towards human. Dogs can have a psychologically affect on their owner. Dogs can provide short term psychological benefits. In a article titled, “The Effects of Animals on Human Health and Well-Being” written in 2009 by Wells, D. L. , found that dogs help relieve stress. It was discovered that people found their friends to be judgemental while finding dogs to be free of judgement.
Friends produce and increase in blood pressure and heart rate. Dogs have been found to lower blood pressure and heart rateb. Dogs are preferred in many households as they are seen as a friendly presence. Dogs have calming effects on their owner. a. It has been proven that people actually perform better and faster when in the presence of their dog rather than their spouse. b. Dogs clearly are a source of support. A. Dog’s can provide long term psychological benefits.
Wells, D. L. (2009) found, owners of dogs appear to gain more general health advantages than owners of cats. Dogs helped lower chances of people developing chronic conditions. “Anderson and colleagues, for example, discovered that the risk factor for coronary heart disease was significantly lower for pet owners than non owners, particularly for males. Dogs also contributed to owners getting minor cold symptoms less frequent. Dogs can help ease depression and loneliness. “ Siegel and associates, for instance, found that pet-owning men infected with AIDS, particularly those with a poor social support system, reported less depression than those who did not own a companion animal”. “More recently, Guest and others showed that people with hearing impairments exhibited significant, and long-lasting (i. e. , up to 18 months), reductions in depression following the acquisition of a service dog”.
Dogs can save lives. Service dogs play a key role in the lives of people with disabilities. According to Skalleberg, A. , & Bouzga, M. (2016) “The US Census Bureau estimates that there are 56. 7 million individuals in the United States with a disability; this number equates to one in five Americans”. According to the 2010 revised ADA regulations, a service dog is defined as “a dog that has been individually trained to perform work or tasks for an individual with a disability. ” Service dogs can alert a person with epilepsy to an oncoming seizure. Navigate the environment for someone who has a vision or hearing impairment. Assist a person with mobile issues. Service dogs may be hard to differentiate between a non service dogs because they are not required to wear a harness or carry any identification. People are only allowed to ask the following two questions to determine if a dog is a service dog.
“Is the dog a service animal required because of a disability?” “What work or task has the dog been trained to perform?”Service dogs are becoming a complementary treatment for military members and veterans diagnosed with posttraumatic stress (PTSD). Service dogs have been able to improve symptoms of PTSD. People with PTSD experience lower depression, higher quality of life, and higher interaction. Dogs play an important role in protecting humans and searching for people.
According to Nu-Designs Digital (2018) “Established in 1976 and the most extensive search dog group in the nation, California Rescue Dog Association (CARDA), and its standards serve as a model for other search dog teams. CARDA is a non-profit organization and has 137 currently certified dog teams spread throughout the state”. These dogs are trained either in trailing or searching. Dogs who are trained in trailing are trained to follow a path using scent that maybe a couple hours or even days old. Dogs who are trained in search are trained to find any human scent within an area. After being trained in trailing or scenting the dog is further trained to a specific specialty.
Cadaver dogs look for human decay. Water dogs search for human decomposition which may radiate from under the water. Avalanche dogs help locate victims who are buried under snow. Disaster dogs are trained to locate victims buried under rubble, collapsed building, or other natural disasters. Search dogs can do many useful things. Search and rescue dogs are used for many scenarios.
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