Anonymous asked in PetsDogs · 9 years ago

DS: Do you agree with people modeling dog diet/behavior off of wolves when they are so distantly alike?

I'd like your opinion or take on this.

All opinions welcomed

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7 Answers

  • Remdog
    Lv 5
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Yes, because what's neat is that they aren't distantly alike, they're extremely alike. Physiologically and genetically, they're nearly identical. The differences seen between some breeds are more profound physiologically than the differences between say a GSD and a wolf.

    One serious mischaracterization, however, is classifying dogs as obligate carnivores. Most comparative animal scientists classify canids as omnivores, right along with humans and rats. Not only do they have a digestive system capable of breaking down carbohydrates, they also do not have the same essential amino acid requirements that cats do.

    For example, canines, like humans can synthesize vitamin A from carotinoids. Carotene is only found in plant sources. Felines and minks, on the other hand, cannot- they must get vitamin A from an animal source- usually herbivores that have already synthesized A from carotene and stored it in their liver.

    This, along with other similar examples, evolutionarily implies that the canine system was intended to take and use nutrients from non-protein sources.

    But to answer more directly, yes. I'm ok with people modelling a domestic dog's diet after wild canids, and some aspects of behavior as well. My dog has the anatomical hardware to digest not only raw, whole protein and fat sources (its fun to watch), but also non-cellulosic starches and sugars.

    Source(s): B.S. in Animal Science
  • Labman
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    I have seen much of the traditional thinking of wolf behavior hold up with dogs. It just seem to be the best explanation for many dog behaviors. Maybe as recent talk indicates, wolves don't behave that way. Dogs do.

    As far as food goes, I have yet to see any evidence that dogs don't do as well on a common kibble as anything else. Much of the arguments against them are made up of half truths and fallacies.

    While evolution works too slowly to have changed the dog much, selective breeding works much faster. Look at the major differences in breeds in the last few hundred years.

    Source(s): A close connection to the real world.
  • Anonymous
    9 years ago

    Well it depends. I admit I use it when using a dogs diet to get the idea in peoples heads that dogs need much more meat than they are given and grains and all those are not natural to dogs to eat. But I never use it with behaviour. Although some trainers do and I respect that. After all if used correctly it can be a good way to tell people about our dogs and how your supposed to be pack leader and not fawn over your dog mainly small ones. But they are different species and it is incorrect to use it for everything the dog does. For example a dog howls some people might say Oh its okay wolves do that and dogs are like wolves but this can be a problem in the making. But it may be correct to say Oh the dogs howling because it is anxious about us leaving and wolves get anxious when a pack member goes missing. I use it sometimes but feel it is incorrect to use it all the time. To me using it all the time is like saying cats are Tigers and humans are apes. They have developed over time and completely different species. We don`t think and act the same as apes but yet we developed from them. The same with dogs and wolves. I do get annoyed with trainers saying use force with your dog because wolves take lots of force from their pack leader. I never listen to that ever. I want my dog to see me as pack leader and respect me but love me and obey commands because it loves me. Food is another matter. A dogs digestive system is different than a wolves but they are still similar. So I do use it sometimes for matters such as how much meat they need but I would never say wolves eat a certain amount of meat so dogs do too because they each need different amounts. I would also never say wolves think like this so dogs must do aswell. That can be the case but not always. Bottom line It works well in some respect but not all the time. However this is a matter of opinion and I respect this.

  • 9 years ago

    While there are differences, then there are many similarities between dog and wolves, both behaviour-wise and diet-wise. If you watch wolf body language it is very close to dog body language, although dogs are more puppy-ish and often more exaggerated in their language, but then most dogs communicate with humans and we're not always the brightest at understanding dog. A dog's nutritional needs is also close to a wolf's nutritional needs so it makes sense to feed them in a similar way.

    What makes me shake my head the most is people modelling dog training on what they *think* is natural wolf behaviour, when it is not.

    As for raw feeding...I am all for it, provided it is done properly by someone who knows about dog nutrition, since it's not as simple as just feeding your dog raw meat. I don't raw feed my dog, but that's more because I am lazy. It is much easier to feed with a high quality dog food. She does get raw bones a few times a month, though.

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  • 9 years ago

    I think knowing the background of wolf behavior is good to know, especially if you have an old dog breed. While my great peranese mix isnt a wolf, she does exhibit some very wolfy behavior. Mostly i think it's important to realize that dogs are not people, they have dog and to some extent wolf expectations. To forget this past is fool hardy and makes for a frustrated dog and owner.

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    How about a fox? Kinda dog-like, but not as much as a wolf. That's because the common ancestor of the dog and the fox split into separate species long before the dog and the wolf. A horse and a donkey are related, enough that they can mate and produce a mule, but not close enough to have offspring that are fertile, because they are different species.

  • JenVT
    Lv 7
    9 years ago

    Dogs and wolves are physiologically the same. Behaviorally, not so much.

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