Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Having the Dogs for Dinner

It's Tuesday, and that means it's time to peruse the Science section of the New York Times for interesting articles about dogs. Check out this article by Nicholas Wade about where, when, and why dogs were first domesticated. The where (far East China and possibly northern Africa) and the when (a really long time ago--between 11,000 and 14,000 years back) are of less interest to me and my fellow Dog Parkers, I think, than the why.

Why did we originally domesticate dogs (or wolves, to be precise; they didn't become dogs until after the domestication process, kind of like some husbands I used to be married to)? To help us hunt? To snuggle with? To chase away dinosaurs? Actually, no. We domesticated them as a regular source of protein. Before beef and pork, there was dog. Apparently, "dog food" had a wholly different meaning during prehistoric times.

Some researchers don't even give us humans credit for the domestication process. They say that wolves domesticated themselves, by hanging around our garbage sites and growing fat and less wary of humanoid activity. We can only take credit for putting them on leashes and then figuring out what to do with them. Eventually we decided they could help put food on the table in ways other than composing the main course.

With this thought in mind, I look at my two pooches. Muzzy's too skinny to eat despite the poundage of food she consumes each day, and old Roma would be a bit stringy and tough. I doubt any of the marinades touted on Create channel's cooking shows could turn either one into a tasty bit of filet mignon. Though if you ask, they both will roll their eyes and tell you that I constantly pinch their soft, tender ears and pronounce them "chomp-alicous."

1 comment:

  1. Well, if it comes down to it,I call Dooley's ears. MMMMmmmm pancakes!


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