How the Dog Became the Dog by Mark Derr
From Wolves to Our Best Friends

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Synopsis

That the dog evolved from the wolf is an accepted fact of evolution and history, but the question of how wolf became dog has remained a mystery, obscured by myth and legend. How the Dog Became the Dog posits that dog was an evolutionary inevitability in the nature of the wolf and its human soul mate. The natural temperament and social structure of humans and wolves are so similar that as soon as they met on the trail they recognized themselves in each other.

How the Dog Became the Dog adeptly and engrossingly examines this singular relationship. Combining the most recent scientific research with Mark Derr's original insights, this book shows that dogs made us human just as humans affected the evolution of dogs.
 

About Mark Derr

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Mark Derr moved to Florida with his family at age six; his interest in the state's history and ecology dates back to the late 1960s, when he watched the landscape around Winter Park change with the construction of Walt Disney World. He is the author of the critically acclaimed books, The Frontiersman and Dog's Best Friend, and his articles have appeared in Atlantic Monthly, Natural History, Audubon, and other publications. He lives in Miami Beach.
 
Published October 27, 2011 by Overlook Books. 287 pages
Genres: Crafts, Hobbies & Home, Nature & Wildlife, Sports & Outdoors, Science & Math. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for How the Dog Became the Dog

Kirkus Reviews

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The Spanish trained dogs to kill the enemy in battle, slave-owners used them to hunt runaway slaves, and in pre-industrial times dogs were beasts of burden who pulled heavy carts and worked tread mills.

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Kirkus Reviews

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Derr suggests that ``the single greatest problem with dogs is people,'' and he goes on to chronicle the misdeeds, from plain old abuse and neglect to the use of dogs to terrorize populations to the nasty little sport of dogfighting.

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Kirkus Reviews

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Derr (A Dog’s History of America, 2004, etc.) explores various scenarios on the road to the long, fruitful relationship between dogs and humans.

Aug 01 2011 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

The New York Times

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Mark Derr is the author of “How the Dog Became the Dog: From Wolves to Our Best Friends.”.

Feb 12 2013 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

Publishers Weekly

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Derr (Dog's Best Friend) takes a dog's-eye view of American history, beginning with speculations on the dog's first appearance in the Americas tens of thousands of years ago.

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Publishers Weekly

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In 1990, Derr wrote a controversial article for the Atlantic Monthly that focused on the overbreeding of dogs for the show ring and for profit under the auspices of the American Kennel Club.

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Publishers Weekly

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Rejecting the argument once prevalent among biologists, that dogs evolved from wolves that hung around prehistoric villages to scavenge, Derr delineates instead a past in which wolves and humans teamed up to bring down more game and to reap other advantages from each other's company, in a process...

Jun 27 2011 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

NPR

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Naturalist Mark Derr says our friendship with dogs and wolves goes back thousands of years more than previously believed. His new book explores how the relationship between humans and wolves developed.

Nov 08 2011 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

Los Angeles Times

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Mark Derr seeks to get at the existential mystery of that ancient link between people and dogs.

Dec 10 2011 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

Washington Independent Review of Books

A domestication process that arose from mutual benefits thousands of years ago has led to today’s cross-breeding that reduces dogs to “biological dolls,” the author argues.

Oct 27 2011 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

We Love This Book

Naturalist and dog expert Mark Derr is the author of several books about dogs, including A Dog's History of America, which travels through time and across continents in his attempt to unravel the mystery of the origins of man’s best friend .

Jun 21 2012 | Read Full Review of How the Dog Became the Dog: F...

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