An excavation site at Wittenham Clumps in Oxfordshire, UK, is thought to have been the home of a wealthy Roman family who lived there during the Iron Age, around the second century CE. One of the more surprising finds was the skeletal remains of a very short dog- only 20 centimeters, or eight inches tall. Yet it had a long backbone. The villa where it was found was a farm, with livestock and working animals. Small dogs were bred in this period for hunting, but this particular specimen had bowed legs and was more likely kept as a pet. Could it have been the runt of the litter, but saved by its cuteness? The artist’s depiction above sure looks like a dachshund (notice the foot in the background for scale), but that breed was developed hundreds of years later in Germany for hunting purposes. However, it could be that the phrase “get a long little doggie” had meaning long before the breed was perfected. Read more about this discovery at BBC. -via Fark
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