What’s with all the new dog breeds? We ask an expert

Evolutionary biologist Frank Hailer on how the human obsession with cute-looking canines is affecting the species

The animal charity Blue Cross is campaigning to stop pugs and French bulldogs being featured in advertisements. It hopes to slow demand for thea flat-faced pooches where “overbreeding” is causing breathing and walking difficulties. Yet new breeds of dogs are introduced each year. How are there so many? And what does this mean for dogs? I asked evolutionary biologist Frank Hailer.

Is it true that all dogs are descended from one line of wolf?
All dogs derive from a one-time domestication event – a single wolf that became a companion animal. And there’s no genetic evidence of other wild species except the grey wolf contributing to modern dogs. At the same time, it’s probably more complex.

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