And Man Created Dog: Education Worksheet

Video highlights from And Man Created Dog

Upper Primary and Junior Secondary

PROGRAMME TITLE    And Man Created Dog

SCHOOL LEVEL  Upper Primary and Junior Secondary


Around 15,000 years of human intervention – first by accident and later by design – has created the planet’s most diverse species: the dog. Dogs are not only our best friends, but also probably our oldest. In this documentary And Man Created Dog we go on a journey from prehistoric days, and learn the story of how dogs evolved from wolves and found a home with humans. Our intervention not only changed the dog from a close descendent of the wolf into a useful servant and companion, but also helped humans survive, settle down and thrive. Through breeding useful traits in dogs, humans created animals that empowered us to move our belongings, hunt food, protect livestock, crops and our own lives. This is the story of how wolves and humans forged a bond that changed dogs, humans and the world forever.


And Man Created Dog is the ultimate canine ancestral story, following the genetic journey from wolf to dog, going back 100,000 years to meet the "mother of all dogs." It traces the evolutionary journey of her descendants over the eons, even as we evolved from cave dwellers to modern humans. It shows how the two species developed a unique ability to communicate, and forged a bond unlike any other in the animal kingdom, a bond that has helped both of us survive and thrive.

Using a mélange of dramatic recreation, computer-generated imagery and contemporary vision, the program illustrates that dog evolution was no accident. Humans have been selectively breeding them for some 14,000 years to serve us as laborer, companion, hunter, herder and warrior, as well as to suit our aesthetic fancy. Dogs in turn helped shape us, our cultures and societies.

Interviews with diverse professionals, including a professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, an animal behaviourist and a cattle rancher, reveal the ongoing nature of evidence-based scientific discovery. Two of the dogs’ extraordinary senses – smell and hearing – are illustrated, examined and explained in minute detail, providing fascinating viewing and a wealth of physiological facts. The program also reveals how and why close physical contact between man and dog releases a powerful hormone in both species.

And Man Created Dog weaves elements of scientific inquiry, understanding and human endeavor to produce a rich tapestry that explains the reasons behind the closest bond between any two animal species on Earth, and the basics of genetic selection and evolutionary biology.


Upper Primary Curriculum

Science provides an empirical way of answering interesting questions about the biological, physical and technological world. The knowledge it produces has proved to be a reliable basis for action in our personal, social and economic lives. Science is a dynamic, collaborative and creative human endeavour arising from our curiosity and interest in making sense of our world through exploring the unknown, investigating universal mysteries, making predictions and solving problems.
Australian Science K-10 Curriculum 2010: Rationale

Junior Secondary Curriculum

The science curriculum provides opportunities for students to experience the joy of scientific discovery and to nurture students’ natural curiosity about the world around them. These ideas resonate with the concept of scientific literacy, a term that is well
established in the science education literature.
Australian Science K-10 Curriculum 2010: Rationale


Upper Primary

In undertaking these tasks, students of Science will:

•    Develop an interest in science and a curiosity and willingness to explore, ask questions and speculate about the changing world in which they live
•    Develop an ability to communicate their scientific understandings and findings to a range of audiences, to justify their own ideas on the basis of evidence, and to evaluate and debate scientific arguments and claims whilst respecting alternative viewpoints and beliefs.
Australian Science K-10 Curriculum 2010: Aims

Junior Secondary

In undertaking these tasks, students of Earth and Environmental Science will:

•    Develop an understanding of historical and cultural aspects of science as well as contemporary science issues and activities and an understanding of the diversity of careers related to science
•    Develop an ability to communicate their scientific understandings and findings to a range of audiences, to justify their own ideas on the basis of evidence, and to evaluate and debate scientific arguments and claims whilst respecting alternative viewpoints and beliefs.
Australian Science K-10 Curriculum 2010: Aims


Upper Primary

Task 1
Write down the names of five different breeds of dog (for example, Labrador). Do some research on the Internet, if you need, to help make a list of the following physical characteristics for each of the breeds:
•    Maximum size
•    Maximum weight
•    Maximum length
•    Length of fur (long/medium/short)
•    Length of nose (long/medium/short)
•    Length of legs (long/medium/short)
•    Type of ear flap (upright/folded over)

Task 2
Write down the names of three breeds of working dog. Describe the job of each breed, the personality of the dog within each breed, and why you think the specific dog was bred to do this work.

Task 3
Imagine you live in a cave during the Ice Age. Write 3-4 sentences to describe what it’s like to live in your cave at night. How do you light the cave? What do you eat? How do you cook your food? How do you stay warm? What do you sleep on? What are you afraid of? Now imagine that a wolf comes to the entrance of your cave. Write 3-4 more sentences to explain how you might encourage the wolf to become your pet.

Task 4
We now know that all dogs evolved from wolves. Choose your favourite type of dog – it might even be your own pet – and write three similarities and three differences between it and a wolf.

Task 5
Dogs and humans have the closest bond of any two types of animals. Describe five different ways that dogs and humans communicate with each other.


Junior Secondary

Task 1
Write two paragraphs of 50 words each to describe how and why humans are believed to have made friends with wolves during prehistoric times. Add a sentence to explain what physical evidence we have that this is true.

Task 2
Write a list of five ways that humans have benefited from domesticating dogs and five ways that dogs have benefited from being domesticated by humans.

Task 3
Choose five different types of working dog. Draw up a table to include the following elements:
•    The breed of dog
•    The dog’s job
•    Three physical characteristics of the dog
•    The dog’s personality type
Finally, write a sentence to explain why each of the breeds was chosen to do its job.

Task 4
Compare dog and human abilities from these perspectives, writing a minimum of three facts for each one:
•    Sight
•    Hearing
•    Smell

Task 5
Explain what oxytocin is, what effect it has when it’s released and the role it plays in the bond between humans and dogs.


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