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Natural World

Dogs have lost the ability to make up

July 4, 2018 | Comment icon 5 comments



Wolves are better at making up than dogs. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 L. David Mech et al.
A new study has revealed that, unlike wolves, dogs seem to have lost the ability to reconcile after a fight.
The research, which was conducted by scientists at the University of Vienna's Messerli Research Institute, involved careful observation of the behavior of four captive wolf and dog packs.

Both dogs and wolves follow certain rules of behavior designed to ensure the pack's survival. One of these, which governs how the animals should behave after a conflict, may seem common to both, however as it turns out, this does not actually appear to be the case.

During the study, the wolf pack members got in to fights with one another but seemed to make up almost immediately, often ending up playing together again as soon as ten minutes later.
The dogs, by contrast, were less likely to fight, but when a conflict did take place it was more vicious than with the wolves and the animals did not seem to reconcile afterwards.

Exactly when our canine companions lost this particular trait remains unclear, however it is almost certainly the result of their domestication over the course of many thousands of years.

It seems that getting along with us is now more important to them than getting along with one another.

Source: Phys.org | Comments (5)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Grandpa Greenman 4 years ago
I wonder how humans would rate on that study. 
Comment icon #2 Posted by bison 4 years ago
The domestication of dogs from wolves caused juvenile characteristics to be retained throughout life. Among these is sustained barking. It comes as no surprise, then, that dogs are also given to immature and unrestrained animosity, while grown wolves know better. Some humans could learn a thing or two from wolves.
Comment icon #3 Posted by paperdyer 4 years ago
It may also depend upon what the dogs were fighting about.  Dogs can get protective of there food, "area" and owners.  My Brittany fought with my son-in-law's Husky because he tried to show her who was boss by biting her on the ear.  She retaliated and won.  They got along after that as long as he didn't try to share her food, water or my wife.  My daughter had a black lab then who has since died.  My dog got along great with him.  No fights and shared. There's a new Husky at their house now.  As long as he doesn't try to sniff her but our makes any quick moves and scares her.  The black lab h... [More]
Comment icon #4 Posted by AllPossible 4 years ago
Makes sense. Wolves depend on each other to hunt but domesticated dogs know their owners provide the food
Comment icon #5 Posted by Kittens Are Jerks 4 years ago
Fascinating study. It never occurred to me that certain animals would reconcile after a fight. But now that I think about it,also see it in sibling rivalry in many species. One minute they're fighting, then frolicking together the next.


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