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Dog   (Canis lupus familiaris)
Category: Mammals

 

 

Dogs have been domesticated by man longer than other species: genetic evidence tells us that the modern domesticated dog diverged from its extinct Eurasian ancestor around 40,000 years ago! Over this large swath of time, dogs have arrived in their myriad modern forms through a combination of natural selection in feral populations and selective breeding by humans for a vast spectrum of physical, behavioral, and sensory traits. This variety of purpose and temperament can be observed in the multitude of “jobs” and roles dogs fill in human lives, from guardian and helper to guide for the blind – we have shaped their evolution and they have shaped ours.

 

Data & Facts

Scientific Classification
Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Chordata
Class - Mammalia
Order - Carnivora
Family - Canidae
Genus - Canis
Species - C. lupus

 
Mammals - Animal Facts

Did you know?


There may be times when you are so tired you feel as if you could sleep for several days - but of course that is not possible without dying from dehydration. However, some mammals have such fine control over their metabolisms, they are capable of nodding off for days or even months, in a state called hibernation. This helps an animal survive during cold periods when food is scarce. A prime example is the alpine marmot who can hibernate for up to 9 months of the year: gathering food and adding about 50% more body weight (primarily fat) as summer ends, the alpine marmot seals itself in a deep burrow, heart rate slowing to five beats per minute, breathing as little as once per minute - emerging (far lighter!) in May, when food is once again available!