Prehistoric burial reveals man taking care of his sick puppy 14,000 years ago

In 1914 some workers in Germany, during excavations, made an unexpected discovery when they accidentally brought to the surface something that looked like an ancient tomb. After initially informing the police and proving that this was not a crime as initially suspected, it was the turn of the archaeologists to visit the site.

Archaeologists were prepared to view an ancient Roman tomb, something very common and likely for the area, but after careful observation, they soon discovered that they had an unexpected find ahead of a very distant and earlier period, the late Ice Age 14,000 years ago. ! So old that the ice had just started melting and warming the climate on the planet.

After the skeletons were collected and after careful study, it was found to be a common grave containing a man, a woman, and a skeleton that was initially thought to be a wolf's skeleton, but eventually turned out to be a dog. It is one of the oldest dog burials ever discovered in the world, and shows us that man already had such a good relationship with the dog that he was buried with him 14,000 years ago.

Representation of the prehistoric dog

From a representation made from the dog's skeleton, it appears that it looked very much like today's Husky dogs. But the findings do not stop there. Over the years and as our technology improves, researchers have come up with even more conclusions.

The most important is that the dog was very young - just 7 months old - and after an analysis of his teeth it appeared that he was suffering from a fatal dog infection (morbillivirus - canine distemper). This disease, as confirmed by the findings in the dog's teeth, has 3 stages and 90% mortality for the dogs. The fact that the dog went through all three phases of the illness before he died shows us that since he was certainly unable to take care of himself and survive without care, the people who lived with him cared for him as much as he could. He was given water and fed as he was powerless to the symptoms of the disease for at least three weeks before he unfortunately died. That is, they took care of him despite the fact that they were productively useless in their difficult daily lives.

The fact that his burial was shared with humans - probably of the wider family, further emphasizes that the man with the dog has a unique bond that goes back many thousands of years so strong that he recognized it as more than just a tool, the dog is not only man's best friend, but it turns out he was also the best friend of prehistoric man!


Street, M., 'Ein Wiedersehen mit dem Hund von Bonn-Oberkassel', Bonner zoologische Beiträge

Trinkaus, E. and Lacy, S.A., ‚Die Menschen von Oberkassel ', Eiszeitjäger. Im Leben

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