How Dogs Became Man's Best Friend

September 01, 2020

Dogs, once cunning and violent predators, are now widely considered to be man's best and oldest friends, but have you ever wondered how such a relationship came to be? Research points to a deep biological connection humans and dogs share, though the jury is still out on how exactly this connection came to be in the first place. Many experts on this topic believe dogs were first domesticated from wolf-like ancestors close to 30,000 years ago, and over time these wild animals have evolved into friendly pets; they sit on our laps, accompany us on walks, and even stare lovingly into our eyes when we play with/comfort them.

Researchers believe that the first proto-dogs accompanied hunters in Europe, eating their leftovers and even becoming friendly with humans because of both symbiotic and biological factors. While dogs and humans benefited each other on hunting trips, dogs specifically helped humans survive—they sniffed out prey for humans and acted as obedient, faithful guards. With each human interaction, these wolf-like predators gradually turned into the domesticated dogs we know today. Furthermore, a study of their DNA shows that dogs and wolfs share genes and genetic structures, meaning they’re both descendants of the extinct wolf-like animals that once lived alongside humans in Europe.

This study also points out that dogs have evolved to read and understand human emotions, and such explains why they have a range of barks for communicating with humans. At the same time, humans have also tried to improve their communication with dogs, evolving their ability to discern what dogs’ barks mean at certain times. One must distinguish a happy bark from a whimper, for example.

A Swedish study found that humans and dogs benefit both physically and mentally when they play and interact with each other, and such explains why dogs make such great exercise buddies. The study also found that dogs and humans both experience joy and comfort when looking into each others eyes, and other research has shown that the temperature exchange between dogs and humans releases anxiety for both participants.

If you’re wondering whether you should pick up a dog and make it your furry companion, don’t have a second thought: do it! And if you are a first-time dog owner who’s worried about potential canine health and behavioral issues, don't worry! Use natural pet products, pet hemp oil, and other organic hemp-derived pet products to take care of your dog both inside and out.