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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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The Process of Domestication

The Process of Domestication

Tame Versus Feral and Domestic Versus Wild

Chapter:
(p.190) Chapter Nine The Process of Domestication
Source:
The First Domestication
Author(s):

Raymond Pierotti

Brandy R. Fogg

Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300226164.003.0010

This chapter discusses the history of the process of domestication conceptually and considers the meaning of the terms domestic, wild, and tame and how the concept of feral fits within this framework. It explores differences among traits in generating phenotypes, including the classic Russian studies on fox behavior and morphology. Domestic dogs are not a natural grouping because they involve multiple lineages (polyphyly) that have undergone extensive interbreeding among lines (reticulate evolution), which reduces clarity concerning traits that might be used to identify dogs as a species. Evidence of polyphyletic origins is also found in other domesticated animals, especially cats, cattle, and pigs. Differences between what it means for an animal to be tame versus domesticated reveals that these concepts are regularly confused and conflated in the popular literature, even by scientists.

Keywords:   domestication, wild, tame, feral, morphology, domestic dogs, multiple lineages, interbreeding, reticulate evolution, polyphyletic origins

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