Pariah dogs, village dogs and religion

I suspect part of the problem with finding out about dog domestication actually’s got less to do with history and more to do with culture. It’s like how current Western society expects dogs to be friendly but it’s not always that consistent and not without some ambivalence to them. Beng, Aka Pygmy, Biblical and Islamic people and even Renaissance Europe (though depending on the community and individual) were rather ambivalent about them.

Useful but not to be trusted with at times. There’s even a study on Ethiopian village dogs where they fear humans, albeit not without implication of prior mistreatment. And that not all dogs, even owned ones, are that extensively socialised to people. A good number of owned dogs spent their time outside for long, whatever the duration and whenever the owner feels like letting them in.

There’s also a post on the kinds of dogs in Mongolia, the ones that guard houses (and sometimes assist owners in hunting down vermin and game) and stray dogs. While there’s some ambivalence around dogs in Mongolia, that’s really got nothing on how Aka Pygmies and Beng feel around them though they could’ve also been Christianised at some point (or currently are).

(Aka Pygmies are sometimes suspected of being monotheistic themselves.)

That Christianity and Islam too have ambivalent attitudes to dogs (similar for cats to a degree depending on sect and church). Useful but sometimes not trustworthy.

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