Dogs are probably the descendants of the gray wolf. The first demonstrable signs of relationships between man and wolves date back to 10.000 to 15.000 years ago.

The gray wolf, the most probable ancestor of all current dog breeds

It's not certain whether man approached the wolf, or vice versa. Both profited from the new situation: people used wolves during the hunt, for keeping flocks together and to warn against approaching enemies. Man in turn, made sure his wolves were fed.

Wolves are very social animals. Like humans, they live in groups (called packs) with social ranks, in which some wolves claim leadership. This made this animal suitable and attractive as a companion, because wolves accepted man as their leader. Requirements with regard to behavior and appearance of wolves started to change.

An example: the dog
The history of dogs
Modern day dogs
Consequences of irresponsible breeding for dogs
Drawbacks for dogs
The pet-industry
Why do people want pets?
Drawbacks for humans
Take a pet?

During the Middle Ages, people started seeing dogs as status symbols. Dogs gave people distinction. The number of dog breeds started to increase enormously. Dogs were bred for size, length, color, face, behavior and strokability, This is still happening today. Thus we arrive with modern day dogs.