African village dog

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The African village dog is a landrace of dog that is predominantly not a mix of modern European breeds, but an indigenous African dog.[1]

Genetic diversity[edit]

A study based on the DNA sequences of 318 African village dogs from Uganda, Egypt and Namibia indicates that dogs from most regions of Africa are genetically distinct.[1][2] There were some exceptions to the diversity in Namibia and Giza, which is proposed to be a result of European colonization or proximity to Eurasia.[3] It was then discovered that African village dogs are "a mosaic of" indigenous dogs and non-native mixed-breed dogs.[2] Another reason the African village dogs have been found to be more genetically diverse is the lack of selective breeding by people, which narrows a breed's gene pools.[1] Previous genetic studies of dogs have confirmed that the domestic dog traces its origins to Eurasian wolves 15,000 to 40,000 years ago.[2]

The information gathered from the study also suggests that breeds originally suspected to have come from Africa, such as the Pharaoh Hound and Rhodesian Ridgeback, have roots outside of Africa.[2] However, the results also indicate that African village dogs descend from indigenous ancestors that are related to the Basenji, a dog originating in the Congo Basin that has many unique traits.[4] The study also said that Afghan Hounds and Salukis appear to be indigenous to the Middle East.[5]

Domestication theory[edit]

Adam Boyko, the lead author of the study, said: "How the domestication process affects genetic diversity is poorly understood. We were interested in studying village dogs because we expected them to be the modern day dogs most similar to dogs that existed before humans began to create breeds. Our study is unique because we are able to surmise whether specific village dog populations are more genetically similar to breed dogs or indigenous ancestral dogs."[4]

African village dogs became the close companion of people in Africa, beginning in North Africa and spreading south.[6] It became the belief after Boyko's study that Eurasian wolves became domesticated long before East Asian wolves.[7] Robert Wayne, a professor at University of California, Los Angeles, said that "It's clear dogs did not originate in sub-Saharan Africa, since wolves are not native to that area", but North Africa was a possibility.[5]

While Boyko and his companion Carlos Bustamante did not think dogs originated in Africa, they did suggest that the conclusion of an East Asian origin did not have strong enough evidence.[8] Boyko said that while he did not rule out East Asia as a possibility, it was just as likely that domestication began elsewhere in Eurasia.[9] Boyko also suggested that dogs originated at some point between Africa and East Asia, such as the Caucasus Mountains, and split off from there.[10] A study by Peter Savolainen proposed a region south of the Yangtze River.[8] Boyko says that while the new work has evidence to support Savolainen's theory, he would like to see even more genetic evidence.[11] Carles Vilà of the Biology Station of Doñana-CSIC says, "I do not think this is the last that we will hear of the time and place of the domestication of dogs."[8]

Behavior[edit]

Due to the effects of geography, gene flow barriers and the presence of non-indigenous dogs in some packs, the African village dog has a complex social structure.[12]

Local Variations[edit]

There are different local variations or types of African village dogs, which can rather be considered as a landrace than a specified breed:

  • Avuvi: a pariah type village dog from Ghana[13]
  • Baganda Dog: a Lurcher-like large game hunting dog from Uganda, named after the Baganda tribe[14]
  • Bagirmi Dog: a large dog with piebald colour, named after the Baguirmi Department of Chad[14]
  • Cameroons Dog: a hunting dog from West Africa, of medium size and primitive type, with erect ears, long legs and short coat, often piebald colour, named after Cameroon[15]
  • East African Dog: a hunting dog from Kenya, large in size[16]
  • Hahoawu: a "clean" medium-sized (11 to 14 kgs) watch dog from Togo, with a far sight and a coat of fawn or red colour, well adapted to city life, named after the Haho river[17]
  • Liberian Dog (aka Liberian Terrier): a terrier-like dog from West Africa, small and reddish brown, named after Liberia[18]
  • Madagascar Hunting Dog: a hunting dog from Madagascar[18]
  • Nyam Nyam (aka Zande Dog): a small hunting dog from Central Africa with erect ears, a curly tail, and a short coat of fawn colour, though to be similar or somehow related to the Basenji, named after the Zande tribe[19]
  • Simaku: a ratter from South Africa, also used for cleaning yards (by scavenging waste), developed by crossing pariah dogs with terriers[20]
  • Sudan Greyhound: an extinct hare hunting dog from Sudan[20]
  • West African Mouse Dog: an extinct small-sized (36 cm) Dobermann-like ratter, with a short, smooth, and red coat[21]
  • Zulu Dog: a small guard and hunting dog with a square muzzle and fawn coat, named after the Zulu tribe[21]

Moreover, it is debatable whether the following breeds also belong or belonged to the landrace of "African village dogs"

  • Abyssinian Sand Terrier: a probably extinct hairless dog
  • Bisharin Greyhound: a hare hunting dog from Sudan, with erect ears and a curly tail, named after the Bishari tribe[22]
  • Dinka Greyhound: a Greyhound-like pariah hunting dog from Sudan, of a rougher type than the other Sudanese breeds, with a short, fawn coat, named after the Dinka tribe[22]
  • Egyptian Hairless Dog: an extinct hairless dog, close relative of the Abyssinian Sand Terrier, small in size (41 cms), with drooping ears[23]
  • Shilluk Greyhound (aka Shilluk Dog): an antilope hunting dog with a robust body and semi-erect (folded) ears, usually of red colour with a black mask, named after the Shilluk tribe[24]
  • Zanzibar Greyhound (aka Zanzibar Dog): a large (68 cms) hunting dog from Zanzibar, with erect ears, a robust body, and a red-white colour, believed to be developed by crossing Salukis with pariah dogs[25]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "African Village Dogs Are Genetically Much More Diverse Than Modern Breeds". ScienceDaily. 6 August 2009. Retrieved 6 May 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d Ramanujan, Krishna (3 August 2009). "African village dogs genetically unique from all breeds". Cornell Chronicle. Cornell University. Retrieved 6 May 2013.
  3. ^ "Of Mutts and Men". National Science Foundation. 3 August 2009. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  4. ^ a b Science Centric (4 August 2009). "Genetic study of African village dogs challenges the ancestral origins of several dog breeds". Science Centric. Science Centric. Archived from the original on 16 June 2013. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
  5. ^ a b Viegas, Jennifer (3 August 2009). "Dog domestication likely started in N. Africa". DiscoveryNews. nbcnews.com. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  6. ^ Simpson, Professor MA (8 January 2013). "Dogs do come from Africa". health24. 24.com. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  7. ^ Newitz, Annalee (6 August 2009). "Were Africans The First People To Domesticate Dogs?". io9. Gawker Media. Retrieved 13 May 2013.
  8. ^ a b c Pennisi, Elizabeth (1 September 2009). "Study Reasserts East Asian Origin for Dogs". ScienceNOW. American Association for the Advancement of Science. Archived from the original on 21 June 2013. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  9. ^ Burns, Judith (3 August 2009). "Domestic dog origins challenged". BBC News. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  10. ^ Wade, Nicholas (3 August 2009). "Research Undermines Dog Domestication Theory". The New York Times. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  11. ^ Roach, John (4 September 2009). "Dogs First Tamed in China". National Geographic. Retrieved 22 May 2013.
  12. ^ Byoko, Adam R.; et al. (18 August 2009). "Complex population structure in African village dogs and its implications for inferring dog domestication history". Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. National Center for Biotechnology Information. 106 (33): 13903–13908. doi:10.1073/pnas.0902129106. PMC 2728993. PMID 19666600.
  13. ^ Avuvis. West African Dogs, Blogspot.com. Searched Feb 25th, 2019.
  14. ^ a b Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 699. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  15. ^ Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 700. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  16. ^ Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 702. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  17. ^ Kärmer, Eva-Maria. Der grosse Kosmos Hundeführer, p. 114. Kosmos, Stuttgart: 2009.
  18. ^ a b Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 706. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  19. ^ Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 322. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  20. ^ a b Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 710. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  21. ^ a b Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 711. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  22. ^ a b Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 37. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  23. ^ Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 579. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  24. ^ Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 38. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.
  25. ^ Morris, Desmond. Dogs - The Ultimate Dictionary of over 1,000 Dog Breeds, p. 39. Trafalgar Square, North Pomfret, Vermont: 2008.