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Working Dogs of Texas

Badlands Design and Production (2009)

ISBN 978-0-9840630-0-0 - $60.00 (hardcover)

In 1541, when Francisco Coronado crossed the Texas Panhandle, he discovered along the Canadian River curious parallel ruts ranging eastward across the prairie. Following these traces, he encountered a buffalo hunting people, mostly likely early Apaches, using powerful, wolf-like dogs to drag loads of hides and other camp burdens on travois formed of lodge poles.


Today, you look at that versatile, non-descript, prick-eared dog that, with no formal training, trees squirrels, catches groundhogs, kills rattlesnakes, helps load and corral livestock, and howls bloody murder whenever a strange car comes up the lane, and think, "A shepherd mix of some sort." No doubt, you'd be right, but there may well be something there from a time when two hunting cultures  looked at each other's dogs and wondered if their bloodlines could be improved by a bit of indigenous blood or by crossing with one of those big yellow curs that suddenly seem to be everywhere.


Types of Canis familiaris don't go extinct as much as they adapt to changing environments and the needs and whims of their fellow travelers, those versatile omnivores who come in a range of sizes and colors, who have thus far adapted to every climate on earth.


Find one and you'll find the other.