Coming up this Sunday on your local PBS stations:
NATURE's two-part special DOGS THAT CHANGED THE WORLD tells the epic story of the wolf's evolution, how "man's best friend" changed human society and how we in turn have radically transformed dogs. Part one, "The Rise of the Dog," airs Sunday, January 13 at 8 p.m. (ET) on PBS. Part two, "Dogs by Design," airs Sunday, January 20 at 8 p.m. (ET) on PBS (check local listings for both broadcasts).You can read more and watch a short promotional video ["Ooh, border collies!"] at this link.
Quote that makes me want to beat my head on rocks:
Despite the plethora of new shapes and sizes, dogs have retained the instincts bred into their ancestors by thousands of years of work: the urge to herd or hunt, to dig and to guard. In DOGS BY DESIGN you'll discover how these hard-wired behaviors help different types of dogs, from hounds to herders, excel at different tasks (and why it can sometimes be so difficult to train them to do otherwise).Virtually all healthy dogs will dig and guard [objects, territory, people]. Most will chase things. Digging and guarding and chasing are indeed "hard-wired." "Herding" is not. Your Sheltie is not "herding" the kids. It's a conceit of the show fancy that dogs can be bred for looks and still "retain the instincts" to be useful workers. Sorry, but no. Nature shouldn't encourage pet owners to trot out the old "We can't make him stop -- he's a herding dog" routine. [You can -- and he isn't.]