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Selective breeding leaves the King Charles spaniel feeling less than cavalier

Written by Tristan Free (Digital Editor)

Cavalier King Charles dog

A new study reveals the genetic load of deleterious variations in different dog breeds, highlighting the genetic damage done by hundreds of years of selective breeding. When the symbiotic relationship between human and dog was first established, following their domestication from wolves, the benefits afforded by their different attributes became clear. To maximize the potential of the species, humanity began to breed them in groups to accentuate attributes suitable to a specific purpose. The beginning of breeds Initially, this breeding was informally based on abilities: strong dogs to pull and carry, fast dogs to chase down animals or smaller dogs...

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