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Dog Hair

The dog was considered sacred by the ancient Egyptians and is commonly deemed “man’s best friend” in the modern western world. However, in some locales the dog does not hold such a revered status, sometimes finding use as a beast of burden or as a source of meat.

One of the earliest animals to be domesticated, the dog has played a significant role in the development of human civilization. Today, most dogs are bred as pets, but the earliest dogs acted as protectors and hunting allies to humans, who realized the advantages of teaming forces with an animal possessing excellent senses of smell and hearing. Dogs were also valued for their speed and strength, and the earliest efforts of genetic control were intended to enhance these and other desirable characteristics, depending on the use for which the animal was intended. Large mastiffs, for instance, were bred for defense and to aid in battle, while terriers were eventually developed to help eradicate rodents from granaries. However, despite the tremendous number of dog breeds that exist in modern times, all of these animals are considered to comprise a single species, Canis familiaris.

The coats of dogs are just as diverse as the breeds of animals that possess them. Variations in color are tremendous and are usually a central consideration in determining a breed. Hair types also vary significantly, but are usually broadly categorized as short, medium, or long. The hair may also be fine or coarse, and coats are usually thickest among animals living in cold areas. In most locales, dogs begin shedding in the spring, thinning out the coat as warmer weather approaches. Though there is not a significant demand for products made of dog hair, some people spin excess dog hair into yarn and utilize it to create knit items.


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