Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Ancient Breeds

You may have noticed that on my featured rescue post for Rusty the Shar Pei, it said that the Shar Pei is "an ancient breed that is usually aloof and standoffish with strangers, but devoted to his family". I also mentioned it in the post about Cody the Akita: "Recent DNA analysis found that the Akita was among the most ancient dog breeds". I don't know if anyone caught that or not.

I did some digging two weeks ago when I ran into a similar sentence in a book I'm reading. It also mentioned "ancient breeds".

I thought I would share what I have found with all of you. Check this wiki page out that talks about ancient breeds. Here are a few clips:

"Fourteen ancient breeds of dog have recently been identified through advances in DNA analysis. These breeds of domesticated dog show the fewest genetic differences from wolves."

"DNA from dogs of 85 AKC-registered breeds (5 individuals per breed in most cases) were tested by Parker et al.[1] This study had some surprises, especially the suggestion that three breeds – the Norwegian Elkhound, Pharaoh Hound and Ibizan Hound – are not as old as typically stated, but rather are more recent recreations of old types"

"Also, as there are some 400 known dog breeds (of which the AKC recognizes 166), it is possible that an extended study would reveal additional ancient breeds."

I'm glad they mentioned that an extended study would reveal additional ancient breeds.

The 14 dog breeds recognized are:
Afghan Hound
Chow Chow
Lhasa Apso
Shar Pei
Shih Tzu
Tibetan Terrier
Akita Inu
Shiba Inu
Siberian Husky
Alaskan Malamute

Anyway, I thought this an interesting bit of information so I figured I'd share.

I wonder if this would have any affect on the dogs' instincts? Or if it would change any of the motivators one would normally use for training? Interesting questions, but some that I can't answer ...


GoLightly said...

I think, with the exception of the little breed guys, those breeds are kinda (don't throw things) difficult to train.

At least, more difficult, certainly not impossible.
just tricky:)
More wild and free, than domesticated..

(ducking objects thrown by owners of these breeds)

OldMorgans said...

I have had personal experience only with a Basenji--and yes they are a bit different from other breeds. You rarely see them in the obedience ring or agility. We had a Basenji from when I was in 4th grade until somewhere shortly after college. Our attempt at obedience training for a house pet was in a class led by a Basenji breeder. When trying to force her into a down position, she bit the guy. You would have thought that a breeder would know not to force a Basenji!


Gus, Louie and Callie said...

Now we know why those dogs are so wrinkled, they are ancient!!!
Thanks for sharing..

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

DogsDeserveFreedom said...

GoLightly - it won't be me throwing things ... now, maybe the people who own those breeds? It would be interesting to hear from some of them ... I think they require more training, but I also think they require more of a bond before you attempt training - the whole "why should I listen to you?" thing.

OldMorgans - thanks for sharing! Did you find the Basenji was more aloof unless you were 'important'? Was it simply that she didn't want to do what this guy was suggesting because of him? Or that she didn't want to do it at all?

Gus, Louie and Callie - great comment! I hadn't thought of that.

Anonymous said...

Hi! Thanks so much for coming by! I visit your blog a few times a week at least :) I really enjoy it, though I've never really been a dog person, due to the fact that I only "had" a dog from birth to the age of 4.

I tried to brush his teeth, apparently...He said "NO, thank you" with a gentle but firm tug on my jacket's sleeve. He was a German Shepherd. I've always been partial to the larger breeds. They seem more noble to me. Then it's been all birds and cats from there on out!

My husband's family has a Lhaso Apso, though. He's the dumbest little guy. Eats his own poop, chases his tail, etc. His redeeming feature is his penchant for howling along when my darling plays the piano! His doggy singing is pretty out of tune, but very sweet! I have to say, though, I don;t know how he'd ever make it out in the wild. He can barely see anything with all that fur covering up his eyes!!