58791Re: Dog collars in period
- Jul 18, 2011There were a wide variety of dog types throughout our time period of study. (breeds are a Victorian convention with the rise of Victorian dog clubs and written/judged standards for each breed).
Once you start looking for dogs in period artwork they are everywhere, inside the house and out. And for all levels of society. Small dogs were the favorite pets of those who could afford them and wanted the companionship (usually ladies of means and religious officials of means). They are at the foot of many tomb effigies from the 1300s forward (possibly earlier?).
It really depends on the time/area of interest as to what was there and what it was being used for. Our time period is *vast*. But in general I've found for small pet dogs (1300s - 1600 western europe) the belled collar was very common, with the buckle collar a far second and a few (kinda) tall collars on very small sighthounds (Gaston Phoebus - feasting scene).
Speaking as an owner of 2 Italian Greyhounds (14-16 lbs, smallest of the sighthounds). Their duty is companionship and warmth. They give off an amazing amount of heat and have been excellent bed warmers on cold nights at camping events. They are charming little hot water bottles.
Although we see small sighthounds in the westen parts of the middle east pre-medieval, it's their popularity starting in 1400s Italy that really sealed the deal. There is a mid 1400s Italian painting of women playing with a group of small white sighthounds (I think it's at the MET).
> I would argue that one of the reasons that there appears mostly hunting
> collars is that few if any dogs in the middle ages were just "pets". Nearly
> all persons and animals in the working households had to have some manner in
> which to "earn their keep" and therefore it would have seemed unseemly for a
> dog to just lay about and not be doing any of the work. Most dogs either
> were some sort of hunter or some sort of herder.
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