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A general knowledge of your dog's body and how it functions will prove helpful in his daily care. It will also be useful in giving the location of wounds or symptoms to the veterinarian over the telephone.
First, let us consider the nature of the dog. He is a hunter and scavenger. He comes from a long line of carnivorous animals, tracing back more than 40 million years to the Eocene epoch. His earliest ancestor was a civetlike animal named Miacis, a meat eater that lived in the prehistoric forests. The dog is related to the wolf, coyote, fox, jackal, dingo, raccoon, dhole and fennec. All of these, including the domestic dog, are geared for the hunt. They are all predators and scavengers and all show the same wolf- or dog-like appearance.
Nature has endowed the dog with a body to help him perform his role of a hunter. His nervous and muscular systems are designed to make him tops in his trade of hunter. He has adequate nervous energy, speed and muscular control —all vital assets to the hunting animal.
In developing the dog, Nature practiced "natural" selection, producing an animal that is adaptable to a variety of climates and conditions. Among all the animals, the dog is
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