How the scavenging wolf evolved into the remarkable spectrum of dogs who exist today has been somewhat of a mystery. The commonly held belief was that humans affected its evolution with selective breeding, assuring that future offspring would provide desired traits – while culling the weakest.
New evidence suggests otherwise. Recently unearthed fossils and analysis of historical genetic data suggest that humans and proto-dogs evolved together. Dog historian Mark Derr discusses canine evolution in the following interview from the Wall Street Journal, and explains how new scientific findings are changing our preconceived notions of the domesticated dog.