A dog human relationship
Researchers estimate that the history of humans and dogs co-existing reaches
back some 15,000 years (though there are some disputed remains dating from
36,000 years ago!). Archeologists have found lots of samples of canine fossil
remains along with human remains at prehistoric sites. The dog was the first
Modern domestic dogs evolved, by a number of different paths, from Asian
wolves. The ancestors of our dogs seem to have chosen to live in mutually
beneficial relationships with humans for food, warmth, and eventually,
companionship. The theory is that the boldest of wolves scavenged leftovers
discarded by early humans on the edges of settlements. Over generations, the
wolves’ offspring became braver still and ever closer to the people they relied on.
Over time, humans viewed the animals as natural allies and began breeding them
to be better hunters and herders.
It is thought that those creatures with the softest temperament, the intelligence
to learn human social cues, the ability and willingness to help with human hunts
and provide protection for their human companions, were encouraged to remain
with the human family-tribe. But wolves with the ability to adapt to living with
humans were very rare. Genetic testing has shown that 90% of the domestic
dogs living today have descended from only 3 early female wolves. So the animal
we know today as the domestic dog has evolved as a human companion from its
beginnings: humans and dogs have become “hardwired” by evolution for a
dog human relationship emotions go deeper
Scientists have found that dogs and owners experience surges in oxytocin, when
they look into each other’s eyes. A rush of this hormone – which is responsible
for helping people bond - could help to explain why humans and dogs have been
best friends for these thousands of years, and why the dogs have become so
welcomed in for more than just their hunting/protecting skills. Scientists found
that dog owners experienced a surge of oxytocin when their pets gazed into their
eyes, a dramatic phenomenon that was mirrored in the animals themselves.
The same hormone has been shown to spike in mothers’ brains when they look
into their children’s eyes. The physiological response drives maternal caring and
strengthens the bond between mothers and their babies.
It is believed this is why we now look to the animals being one of our own and treat them this way, as we all know offering them scraps from the table is not good for them which is why Judges Choice offer food that the owner will find as appetising. Products such as Chicken and Brown rice and Lamb & Sweet Potato are something most people would be happy to find on their own plate, so are more than happy to feed their dog.
The latest finding suggests that dogs have tapped into this ancient biological
mechanism, and through it reinforced the ties that have existed between humans
and dogs since the animals were first domesticated thousands of years ago when
those brave wolves did more than just pick up the scraps and left-overs on the
outside of the camp walls, but ventured inside to meet the human occupants and
start to form this great, great bond.