Dogs don’t just let them be pushed into a crate

Golden Retrievers are sweet bastards. You should not take them as a sentinel, because they will come out with a friendly tail wagging every stranger. Do you want a sergeant from coûte que coûte Defending the home and hearth, you may be better off choosing a Doberman. Border Collider is very smart and energetic. There is something for everyone. If you want a dog with a certain personality, look in reference books for which breed to buy. Or you can inquire about it at the pet store. But are the stereotypes correct?

Certainly, not all dog breed descriptions are out of the blue. Yes, Golden Retrievers usually pick up toys, as their name suggests, and they are affectionate. It is also true that beagles and Siberian huskies howl a lot. However, we attach great importance to stereotypes, say American biologists.

round before defecation

Scientists from the University of Massachusetts Medical School, among others, have investigated how genetically strong certain behavioral traits are in 78 dog breeds and countless mixed breeds. They analyzed the DNA of more than 2,000 dogs whose owners completed extensive questionnaires beforehand. How often the dog barks, like toys, quickly gets frustrated, looks for company, turns around before he defecates … Dozens of questions that dog owners must answer. Then they sent their pet’s saliva for DNA analysis.

By studying dogs, we may be able to learn more about mental illnesses in humans. A dog can act like a model animal”

With the dogs’ genetic material on hand, researchers were able to predict which animals are obedient and which are more stubborn. But a genetic predisposition to obedience had little to do with race. Individual differences between dogs – as well as between animals of the same breed – were very significant.

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Overall, the breed explains only 9 percent of the behavioral variance in individual dogs. Here’s what the researchers write in a professional journal this week Science† Age or gender often explains much better if dogs are playful, alert, affectionate or active.

Dogs tax society, why isn’t society taxing them?

Researchers have made another wonderful discovery. Ask Golden Retriever owners if their dogs are friendly with strangers and they will tell you yes. But when you ask the same question about dog owners that you are about to describe as pure golden retrievers, the answers are more mixed. However, the dogs are not much different from each other. Dog owners seem to be strongly influenced by stereotypes when answering questions. They may sign their expectations on the dog and raise him in line with those expectations as well.

Not surprisingly, all kinds of personality traits in dogs are widely spread across different breeds. Most of the behaviors may have been rooted in the animal thousands of years ago, the researchers wrote.

Varieties Explosion

There are still many questions about domestication. But scientists estimate that dogs separated from wolves about 12,000 to 15,000 years ago, slowly becoming loyal companions to humans. Only in the past two millennia did humans begin to choose traits such as hunting, guarding, and herding.

But the real explosion of races dates back only to the last century and a half. In the Victorian era, people suddenly began to appreciate racial purity. So you’re talking about nearly fifty generations of dogs that have given rise to the current treasury of four-legged friends’ curiosity. On evolutionary time scales, this means nothing.

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The question remains, why do researchers at the Institute of Medical Research study dog ​​behavior so extensively? This research is part of Darwin’s Ark, a citizen science project focused on genetics and pets, started by the University of Massachusetts Medical School. The project was initiated by geneticist Elinor Carlson. She conducts research in obsessive-compulsive disorders, also known as compulsive disorders.

“Dogs often also suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder,” Carlson said during an online question with reporters. By studying dogs, we may be able to learn more about mental illnesses in humans. The dog can serve as a model animal.

dog database

Carlson noted that dog owners like to talk about their pets through scents and clothing. “As soon as people hear I’m working with dogs for my research, they pull pictures off their phones to talk broadly about their four-legged friends.”

This gave her the idea of ​​creating a large database in which people could enter data themselves. “To research something as complex as obsessive-compulsive disorder, and the genetic basis that could lie behind it, you need a massive amount of data.”

The dog database is a goldmine for researchers.

Denton Watson

"Friend of animals everywhere. Evil twitter fan. Pop culture evangelist. Introvert."

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