Dog Behavior Isn’t Entirely Dependent on Canine Breed: New Study Suggests
Dog behavior, which ranges from aggression, defensiveness, and sociability, among others, has long been thought to be based on dog breed.
However, a new study has suggested that a canine breed is relatively insignificant when it comes to exhibiting these animal tendencies and attitudes.
Breaking down racial stereotypes
(Photo: MARTIN BERNETTI/AFP via Getty Images)
Researchers from the United States have reported that only 9% of behavioral variations are related to canine breed; this is based on a data sample of 18,385 pet dogs of which almost 50% were purebred, according to the article published in the journal Science Friday, April 29.
The study challenged popular stereotypes of dog breeds, such as Golden Retrievers and Labrador Retrievers being highly social with humans, allegedly due to their genetic makeup.
Although the research approach does not rule out the correlation between dog breeds and their attitudes, American scientists have hinted that these behavioral characteristics are solely based on individual dogs.
The scientists also pointed out that, despite the great variability in physical traits of dogs by breed, this does not imply that these behaviors are also attached to them.
The team arrived at their conclusion by analyzing 2,155 genetic data from the sample combined with owner surveys.
Read also : Following the death of a companion, dogs show grieving behavior according to a study
Stereotype: Friendly Races
Since domestic dogs first appeared about 160 years ago, anecdotal and empirical evidence shows that the following canine breeds are considered friendly:
- border collie
- boston terrier
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Golden retriever
- Irish Setter
- labrador retriever
- Small Basset Griffon Vendeen
- Pembroke Welsh Corgi
- shih tzu
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Stereotype: aggressive breeds
According to American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)aggression is the most common and serious problem in dogs.
This behavioral trait is why pet owners have sought help from animal psychologists, trainers, and veterinarians.
The ASPCA pointed out that some of the most common aggressive behaviors or gestures include: growling, baring teeth, biting in rapid succession, lunging forward, growling, snapping, and intense barking.
If there is a list of sociable dogs, below are the following dog breeds that have been stereotyped to possess aggressive traits:
- Chow chow
- Doberman Pinscher
- jack russel terrier
- German shepherd
- America Staffordshire
- pit bull terrier
- siberian husky
If not genetics, what is the most crucial factor that determines canine sociability or aggression?
Daniel Mills, professor of veterinary behavioral medicine at the University of Lincoln, has suggested that genetic mechanisms alone are unable to control potential risky behaviors; this is because animals must also make judgments based on environment and developmental history, according to The Guardian.
According to Mills’ view, judgment on external factors, such as the dog’s owner, training, existing threats, and upbringing are always the predominant factors that can influence a companion dog’s behavior.
In the United States alone, 38.4% of households are made up of pet dogs, while 25.4% have cats. They are followed by birds and horses with only 2.8% and 0.7% ownership of pets inside residences, as cited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) of 2017-2018 US Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook.
Related article: Study: Dog’s Demeanor Reflects Owner’s Personality, But Here’s the Rub
© 2022 NatureWorldNews.com All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.