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  1. 1. COMPANION ANIMALS DOGS There are many theories on why man and dog developed this symbiotic relationship, but which ever you chose to believe, the relationship produced a multitude of canines suited to every person and purpose imaginable. Is most likely the case that man did not initially choose dog; rather dogs chose man. Dogs were likely attracted to human campsites for animal remains and offal from the victims of recent hunts. They soon learned that by hanging around man's habitations, they could grab a quick bite to eat. It is likely that dogs were initially tolerated around the perimeter of camps simply because they would dispose of the garbage. This waste disposal function continued for countless centuries and is still being fulfilled by the pariah dogs in India. Anthropologists studying primitive tribes in the South Pacific have noticed that on those islands where people keep dogs, the villages and settlements are much more permanent. Villages without dogs have to move every year or so simply to escape the environmental contamination caused by rotting refuse. This would suggest that dogs may have been a vital element in the establishment of permanent cities in that bygone era before we learned the importance of public sanitation (Corren, 2003). Now our ancestors started to notice an added benefit. Since the canines around the village began to look upon the area as their territory, whenever a strange human or wild beast approached, the dogs would sound the alarm. This would alert the residents in time to rally some sort of defence if needed. As long as dogs were present, the human guards did not need to be as vigilant, thus allowing for more rest and a better lifestyle. It takes only a short journey to get from dogs guarding the village to a personal house dog which might serve the benign purpose of alerting the family to the approach of visitors both invited and uninvited, Clearly, this was one of the motivations for taking puppies from the wild dogs, bringing them into the home, and domesticating them as house dogs. A recent survey in Canada (2008) says that there are around 5.9 million dogs in Canada, REFERENCES "Latest Pet Population Figures Released" (PDF). Canadian Animal Health Institute. members/documents/PressRelease-PetSurvey-November15.pdf. Retrieved 2008-07-26 Coren, S. 2003 Dogs and Humans-How the relationship began (excerpt from The Intelligence of Dogs) an article available at
  2. 2. CATS The cat (Felis.catus), is a small carnivorous mammal, that is valued by humans for its companionship and ability to hunt household pests. It has been associated with humans for at least 9,500 years. Cats are the most prevalent domesticated animal; 63 million of them are kept as pets around the world and Canada alone is home to a 7.9 million of them according to a recent survey report published in 2008. Cats have become more popular as home companions. The 30 to 40 distinctive breeds can be grouped into two general categories: the longhaired and the domestic shorthair. Both of these breeds occur in various subcategories based on their coat colour, such as white, cream, chinchilla (or silver), smoke, tortoiseshell, and tabby (red, blue, and so on). Other distinctive and popular breeds include the Siamese (with seal point, blue point, chocolate point, and lilac point colour variations), the long-haired Himalayan, which resembles the Siamese in coloration, and the Abyssinian, Burmese, Manx, Rex, and Russian Blue. Cats are wonderful pets if you get to know them, spend time with them, and treat them right. They are fairly quiet and independent animals, although they love to thrive on your attention. Cats grow and blossom in a home where they are cuddled and talked to often. Cats bury their own waste and thus don't 'need' to be walked or let outside. Cats require less grooming than dogs and are generally fairly less aggressive. Though they are cheaper pets than dogs, you will still need to afford the following: food, treats, bowls, litter, litterbox, scooper, scratching post, cat bed, toys, cat carriers, brushes and grooming tools, collar, identification tag, and medical care. Cats need quality time with you and need to play, be nurtured and be exercised. Some studies report that indoor-only cats live on an average for 12 years, while outdoor-only cats live for just 3 years. Cats can bring so much in to your life. They are wonderful, intelligent, expressive creatures who can bring you vast amounts of joy and happiness. It is shown that people (especially seniors) with pets have lower blood pressure, are happier, and live longer. "Latest Pet Population Figures Released" (PDF). Canadian Animal Health Institute. members/documents/PressRelease-PetSurvey-November15.pdf. Retrieved 2008-07-26. Driscoll, C. A., Clutton-Brock, J., Kitchener, A.C and Stephen J. O'Brien, S.J. 2009. The Evolution of House Cats. Scientific American. Retrieved 26 August 2009.