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Cave painting of dogs mating, from Guacara de Sanabe, Dominican Republic. The entire cave features just such emblems of the island's fertility.

The Taino Indian god Opiyelguabiran, who protected and assisted the spirits of the dead, had the form of a dog. The Tainos had a very small companion and hunting dog called an alco which could growl but rarely barked. A guinea-pig like animal was the primary game animial, so didn't take a large dog to help find and kill them.

The alco was the island's only domestic aniimal. The breed is now extinct, but from records including paintings from life, it resembled a chihuahua but with flopping ears, and could be spotted or self. The same breed was known throughout Central America and as far south as Peru.

The modern Antillean dog is believed to have some of the original alco in its heritage, heavily deluted by larger Spanish hunting dogs with upright ears. The Antellian does sometimes look like an enormous chi.

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