Q:

What are some facts about dogs?

A:

Quick Answer

Modern domestic dogs are descended from the European wolf. Humans have been selectively breeding dogs only for the last few hundred years, and they are still refining breeds with traits such as superior intelligence and sense of smell. The American Kennel Club recognizes 178 breeds of dog and categorizes them as either sporting, non-sporting, hound, herding, working, terrier, toy or miscellaneous breeds.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

Even the average family pet has an excellent sense of smell. When dogs receive specialized training, they can even locate insect infestations and invasive or threatened animal species. Border control and law enforcement agencies have long used dogs to detect illegal drugs, hidden cash, blood, contraband and illegal immigrants. Military dogs have been used to identify explosive devices.

The average dog probably knows about 160 words, according to psychologist Stanley Coren, who researches dog intelligence. A border collie named Rico has learned more than 200 words for different and unique objects and learns new words as fast as a human toddler can. After studying Rico’s abilities, scientist Julia Fischer at Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, concluded that the brain can understand and process words without developing speech. Dogs that appear to understand their human owners conversations probably do.

Learn more about Dogs

Related Questions

  • Q:

    Why do dogs lick themselves?

    A: Dogs lick themselves in order to groom their fur, to heal themselves from any wounds and to express stress and anxiety. Dogs may also lick other dogs in or... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How long do dogs live?

    A: According to PetMD, the average life span of a mixed breed dog under 90 pounds is 11 years, while larger dogs live for about eight years. For purebred dogs... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What does wormed mean for dogs?

    A: A dog that has been wormed has been given medicine to kill internal parasites, commonly called worms. The process is also called deworming and may need to ... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Can dogs look up?

    A: Dogs can look upward to a certain extent. However, their neck muscles lack the same range of motion as humans, making it difficult for dogs to see directly... Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore