Monday, November 17, 2014

Tika & Dogger Body Lanugage & History

I was reviewing a new book and Tika, snuggled beside me in our chair, looked up and said, "I could have explained that to you.......... you didn't need a book!"  Nonetheless, I did enjoy Justin Silver's new book The Language of Dogs.

This book explained that "Lips turned up" was the sign of a fearful animal and often mistaken for aggression.  "Raised ears" means your dog is listening, eavesdropping on you.  "Shedding" indicates fear or stress. "Squinting eyes,"  generally means your dog in in pain or not feeling well. "Avoiding eye contact,"  may consider you a threat or lack of confidence. The book explains dozens of other behaviors.

And what does this have to do with genealogy? Our ancestors ate dogs, that's what. Dogs were portable meat-on-the-hoof to many cultures around the world including in the United States. And many cultures today still enjoy eating dog meat.

United States of America

The term "dog" has been used as a synonym for sausage since 1884 and accusations that sausage makers used dog meat date to at least 1845. The belief that sausages contained dog meat was occasionally justified.
In 1846, a group of 87 American pioneers were stranded by snow while traveling in the Sierra Nevada. Some of the starving people from this group, known posthumously as the Donner Party, ate a pet dog for sustenance.
In the late 19th century, a cure for tuberculosis (then colloquially termed "consumption") using an exclusive diet of dog meat was tried. Reports of families eating dog meat out of choice, rather than necessity, were rare and newsworthy. Stories of families in Ohio and Newark, New Jersey who did so made it into editions of The New York Times in 1876 and 1885.
In the early 20th century, dog meat was consumed during times of food shortage.

Native Americans

The traditional culture surrounding the consumption of dog meat varied from tribe to tribe among the original inhabitants of North America, with some tribes relishing it as a delicacy, and others (such as the Comanche) treating it as an abhorrent practice. Native peoples of the Great Plains, such as the Sioux and Cheyenne, consumed it, but there was a concurrent religious taboo against the meat of wild canines.
During their 1803–1806 expedition, Meriwether Lewis and the other members of the Corps of Discovery consumed dog meat, either from their own animals or supplied by Native American tribes, including the Paiutes and Wah-clel-lah Indians, a branch of the Watlatas, the Clatsop, the Teton Sioux (Lakota), theNez Perce Indians, and the Hidatsas. Lewis and the members of the expedition ate dog meat, except William Clark, who reportedly could not bring himself to eat dogs.
The Kickapoo people include puppy meat in many of their traditional festivals. This practice has been well documented in the Works Progress Administration"Indian Pioneer History Project for Oklahoma".
One last thought:  Ever wonder why they are called Hot Dogs????

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