The critical period for socialization begins with walking and exploring the environment. Dog and wolf pups both develop the ability to see, hear and smell at 4 weeks of age. Dogs begin to explore the world around them at 4 weeks of age with these senses available to them, while wolves begin to explore at 2 weeks of age when they have the sense of smell but are functionally blind and deaf. The consequences of this is that more things are novel and frightening to wolf pups. The critical period for socialization closes with the avoidance of novelty, when the animal runs away from - rather than approaching and exploring - novel objects. For dogs this develops between 4 and 8 weeks of age. Wolves reach the end of the critical period after 6 weeks, after which it is not possible to socialize a wolf.[45]
In 2004, a study reviewed 5 other studies of feral dogs published between 1975 and 1995 and concluded that their pack structure is very loose and rarely involves any cooperative behavior, either in raising young or in obtaining food.[82] Feral dogs are primarily scavengers, with studies showing that unlike their wild cousins, they are poor ungulate hunters, having little effect on wildlife populations where they are sympatric.[83]:267 However, several garbage dumps located within the feral dog's home range are important for their survival.[84] Even well-fed domestic dogs are prone to scavenge; gastro-intestinal veterinary visits increase during warmer weather as dogs are prone to eat decaying material.[85] Some dogs consume feces, which may contain nutrition.[86][87] On occasion well-fed dogs have been known to scavenge their owners' corpses.[88] go here for more
The term personality has been applied to human research, whereas the term temperament has been mostly used for animal research.[18] However, both terms have been used interchangeably in the literature, or purely to distinguish humans from animals and avoid anthropomorphism.[19] Personality can be defined as “a set of behaviors that are consistent over context and time”.[20] Studies of dogs' personalities have tried to identify the presence of broad personality traits that are stable and consistent over time.[19][20][21][22] more on this
×