Imagine how our ancestors felt when the first friendly wolf dared to come close, perhaps figuring that it was safer to take a handout than to chase down a large prey animal who might fight back.  Imagine the first time that friendly wolf crept near the fire or onto one of the animal skins, right up against a person, keeping both of them warm as the fire burned down.  How many generations did it take for the wolf to become the dog, to become so woven into the lives of humans that it is impossible to imagine life without them?  How long was it before the humans noticed that the dogs would stay close to them when they were sick, would make them laugh when things were rough, would keep an eye on the youngsters, the human ones as well as their own, and could understand the words that were uttered at them, could understand and do what they were asked to do?

We no longer live in caves, and some of us have stopped throwing stones when we are angry or dragging our loved ones along by their hair.  But the dog is still with us, nestled at the foot of the bed, hanging around the kitchen waiting for a treat, leading the way on walks, making us laugh when we are blue.  The dog is still there, hoping to do something useful – gather the laundry, protect the house, play with the kids, tend to the sick.  The dog is still there and amen to that.