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The First DomesticationHow Wolves and Humans Coevolved$
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Raymond Pierotti and Brandy R Fogg

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780300226164

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300226164.001.0001

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Wolves, Archaeologists, and the Origin of Dogs

Wolves, Archaeologists, and the Origin of Dogs

(p.83) Chapter Four Wolves, Archaeologists, and the Origin of Dogs
The First Domestication

Raymond Pierotti

Brandy R. Fogg

Yale University Press

This chapter focuses on archaeological research and its role in explaining the transformation from wolf to dog, addressing why this topic is controversial: the tendency to identify wolf remains found in archaeological sites as evidence of either interlopers or human killing overshadows the alternate possibility of social bonding between humans and wolves. This probably has prevented appreciation of considerable early evidence of relationships between humans and wolves before the latter became sufficiently phenotypically distinct (“doglike”) to be recognized as domestic animals shaped by humans. Some archaeologists do not acknowledge the possibility that humans interacted with and coevolved with wolves for thousands of years without generating significant phenotypic change in either species, and thus early wolves living with or cooperatively hunting with humans probably go unrecognized by scholars looking only at obvious physical changes.

Keywords:   archaeological research, wolves, dogs, social bonding, humans, domestic animals, coevolution, phenotypic change, cooperative hunting, physical changes

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