Dogs have been with men for centuries. They have a level of attachment and social interaction with their masters that is unmatched in the animal kingdom. Because of this, men have adopted dogs for several tasks. Some ancient chores that dogs have carried out are hunting, or helping with hunting, herding livestock, guarding a place from intruders, keeping rats and other undesirable animals away, pulling loads, and of course, keeping us company. In more modern times, humans have used dogs for other activities, such as guide dogs for blind.
Because of the several types of activities that dogs do, some dogs are best suited for some tasks than others. In order to get dogs that are fit for certain tasks, men have resorted to breeding dogs for centuries.
The result of these is that now there are hundreds of dog breeds, which are suited for several tasks. Owners of dogs and dog specialists believe that dog breeds have come to a point where the genes have become pure and must be protected in order to make sure that the breed retains the characteristics that it is known for. There are several measurements that these people and associations have taken to protect the pureness of dog breeds; the most famous one being the use of Pedigree. Pedigree is the recorded lineage of a dog, which proves that the animal comes from parents and genes that will ensure a certain set of characteristics.
Some dog breeds have become quite famous due to their natural abilities, and/or the depiction of them in literature or movies.
One of such dog breeds that has become famous is the Chihuahua. This little dog from the Mexican state of the same name seems to be replacing the poodle as the epitome of companionship pet that famous people carry, with the most famous example being Paris Hiltons pet Chihuahua called Tinkerbell. Because of its small size, temperament and head, it has also been used in cartoons as well. Ren, from the Ren and Stimpy show, is an example of a Chihuahua depicted in an unflattering manner.
Other dog breeds have also been depicted extensively in the media. For example, the Saint Bernard. The Saint Bernard, which is named after a pass in the Swiss Alps, is a big dog that was used in alpine rescues. In popular culture it is depicted as extremely big, slow, clam and with a flask of brandy which is usually too small compared to the dogs size.
These examples just show a bit the impact of dog breeds in human life and culture. As humanity advances, new uses are found for dogs, which continue to be mans best friend.