As with many canids, one of the primary functions of a dog's tail is to communicate their emotional state, which can be important in getting along with others.
In some hunting dogs, however, the tail is traditionally docked to avoid injuries.
In 1978, a review to minimize the number species listed under genus Canis proposed that "Canis dingo is now generally regarded as a distinctive feral domestic dog.
Christopher Wozencraft listed under the wolf Canis lupus what he proposed to be two subspecies: "familiaris Linneaus, 1758 [domestic dog]" and "dingo Meyer, 1793 [domestic dog]", with the comment "Includes the domestic dog as a subspecies, with the dingo provisionally separate – artificial variants created by domestication and selective breeding.
Although this may stretch the subspecies concept, it retains the correct allocation of synonyms." Crowther, Juliet Clutton-Brock and others argue that because the dingo differs from wolves by behavior, morphology, and that the dingo and dog do not fall genetically within any extant wolf clade, that the dingo should be considered the distinct taxon Canis dingo.
) was the general word for all domestic canines, and dog referred to a subtype of hound, a group including the mastiff.
It is believed this "dog" type was so common, it eventually became the prototype of the category "hound".
The father of a litter is called the sire, and the mother is called the dam.