Skip to main content
Home Off Topic

Dog Breeds Tree

GardawgGardawg Posts: 16,802 AG

Where did your dog come from? New tree of breeds may hold the answer

By Elizabeth PennisiApr. 25, 2017 , 12:00 PM

From the 80-kilogram Great Dane to the 1-kilogram tiny teacup poodle, there seems to be a dog for everyone. Now, the largest genetic analysis to date has figured out how those breeds came to be, which ones are really closely related, and what makes some dogs more susceptible to certain diseases.

"They show that by using genetics, you can really show what was going on as [breeders] were making these breeds," says Elinor Karlsson, a computational biologist at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester who was not involved with the work.

After dogs were initially domesticated—likely between 15,000 and 30,000 years ago—people picked the best hunters, house guards, and herding animals to be their best friends, depending on their needs. There were dogs for war and for cuddling, for fur and meat, and for being good companions. Today dogs come in 350 or so breeds, each with specific traits and behaviors. Many arose in the past 200 years. Some studies have defined the genetics of a relatively small number of breeds, but none has*been comprehensive enough to show how and when most came into existence. "The whole period in between [domestication and today] has been a black box," Karlsson says.
"Forgiveness is a strange thing. It can be sometimes easier to forgive our enemies than our friends. It can be hardest of all to forgive people we love." Fred Rogers  


Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!


Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

Preview This Month's Issue

Buy Digital Single Issues

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Florida Sportsman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Florida Sportsman stories delivered right to your inbox.


Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Florida Sportsman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now