Review Of "The Lost History Of The Canine Race: Our 15,000-Year Love Affair With Dogs" By M. E. Thurston

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The title of this anecdotal history of canine-human relations is somewhat misleading. Thurston documents their relatively recent (in evolutionary terms) association and introduces a wealth of material documenting the cruel and often bloodthirsty uses of dogs for war, genocide, and ethnic and class subjugation. Love of dogs and their humane treatment appears to have been restricted to the aristocracy until 19th-century Europe. In a readable and engaging style, the author covers dogs found at prehistoric sites and their life in ancient Egypt, Rome, and the Americas. The greatest coverage is given to Europe from medieval times to the present and to current controversies and customs in our treatment and mistreatment of dogs. The book is well produced with numerous black-and-white and several color illustrations. The lack of references and some scientific errors greatly reduce the usefulness of the book for research; there is a list of recommended readings, a glossary, and a short index. The greatest use of the book for college and university libraries may be to put current animal rights arguments in historical perspective. General readers; undergraduate students through professionals.


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