«BOOK OF THE DOG» 1881
BY VERO SHAW, B.A. CANTAB.,
Assisted by the Leading Breeders of the Day.
\VITII AN APPENDIX ON CANINE MEDICINE AND SURGERY, BY \V. GORDON STABLES, CM., M.I)., R.N.
CASSELL, FETTER, GALPIN & Co.
LONDON, PARIS 6* NEW YORK.
[ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.]
THE ILLUSTRATED «BOOK OF THE DOG»
HISTORICAL AND LITERARY.
|S in former works relating to dogs but small attention has been devoted by the authors to the modes of classification adopted by the earlier writers on the subject, a brief notice of the
principal cannot but be of interest. As to later works, in several encyclopaedias there has been an attempt made to classify the different varieties, but such classification has, so far as our observation carries us, invariably been founded on
the structural development of the different breeds alone, and aot unfrequently on comparison with the characteristics of
other animals, little or no attention having been paid to the various temperaments and capabilities of the several breeds. Visitors to the great shows of the present day, on the contrary,
must be struck by the extreme simplicity of the
arrangement of the catalogues, which invariably divide the candidates into two divisions, namely, one for sporting, and one for non-sporting dogs. In
our opinion this is an ample distinction, for all practical purposes ; since in the present day, in
consequence of dogs being so much better understood than they formerly were, the uses and
capabilities of each breed are well appreciated by those at all interested in them. Moreover,
the large increase in the number of breeds (owing to the manufacture of so many new varieties
of late years) has rendered an elaborate classification undesirable, as being likely to complicate instead of facilitating the task of distinguishing between the various breeds.
The majority of the earlier writers on the dog, however, adopt different classifications in the
lists of dogs published by them, and these, being of some considerable historical interest, we
propose recapitulating ; whilst due attention shall be given to the scientific division of Cuvier,
in which the structural development of the dog is compared with that of other mammals.
Ik-fore turning our attention to the various works on the dog which have from time to time
appeared in our own language, we may mention that in the earlier part of the Christian era only
two races of dogs out of the sixteen or seventeen known to the ancients, are stated to have been
recognised by them as hunting dogs. These were Greyhounds, and dogs hunting by scent. Arrian,
however, also called the younger Xenophon, who wrote in the year A.D. 130, affirms that dogs
hunting by sight and not by scent were quite unknown in the time of Xenophon the elder. At the
same time Arrian, in his work above alluded to, most accurately describes our modern Greyhound ;and the anonymous translator of this writer, who has been the means of rendering his works so
popular, fairly shows the dog to be of Celtic origin.
The earliest work on dogs in English is a MS. in the British Museum, entitled the»Mayster of Game,» and is written by Edmund de Langley. This work was published in the fourteenth century, and deals principally with hunting subjects, though frequent allusion is made to dogs therein.