The appearance of modern dogs

Adapting the dog to the taste of the consumer

Today's dogs come in all shapes and sizes. There are now over 400 dog breeds. They still all belong to the same species, which means that all breeds can be crossbred and still have fertile offspring. All of them have been bred by humans. This means that we decide which dog breeds with which dog, depending on which characteristics are desirable. Man is playing God, as it were: "a slightly smaller head, shorter legs and cute floppy ears". There is now a true dog-industry that occupies itself with breeding dogs, and that alters dogs to suit people's requirements and wishes.

Animals suffer for food manufacturers

For nearly 10 months in 2002 and early 2003, a PETA investigator went undercover at an Iams contract testing laboratory and discovered a dark and sordid secret beneath the wholesome image of the dog- and cat-food manufacturer: dogs gone crazy from intense confinement to barren steel cages and cement cells, dogs left piled on a filthy paint-chipped floor after having chunks of muscle hacked from their thighs; dogs surgically debarked; horribly sick dogs and cats languishing in their cages, neglected and left to suffer with no veterinary care. The consequences of irresponsible breeding for dogs are considerable.

This article is part of a series on pet adoption. Below the table of contents of this series. Below that even more articles about pets.

Table of contents

Introduction: keeping pets.

An example: the dog

The history of dogs.
Modern day dogs.
Consequences of irresponsible breeding for dogs.
Drawbacks for dogs.


Why do people want pets?
Drawbacks for humans.
The pet-industry.


Take a pet?

More articles on pets

Are pets education tools?
Bad reasons for keeping pets.
Dependency of animals.
Letting go of attachment to animals.
Children and their perception of animals.
A disposal fee for every pet animal purchased?
Abandoned pets as "free as a bird"?

Links to articles about specific animals

Suffering of reptiles.
Why the goldfishbowl is bad.
A rabbit as a pet… suitable or not?