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After the Ice Age 11,000 years ago, dogs have split into different breeds



Research on ancient canine DNA reveals that after the Ice Age 11,000 years ago, humans were still hunters and gatherers, and dogs had split into different breeds

  • Researchers studied the genomes of 27 different dogs dating back to 11,000 years
  • At the end of the ice age, there were already five different dog breeds
  • Dog migration and evolutionary patterns closely match human migration

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Dogs are the longest life-span animal companions of human beings. Thousands of years of coexistence have earned them the well-deserved title of “man’s best friend”.

A new study now finds that dogs that evolved from wolves split into different breeds as early as 11,000 years ago.

A total of 27 ancient dog genomes were sequenced, and the results showed that when the last ice age ended, there were at least five types of dogs.

Each of these ancient breeds has its own unique genetic lineage, and they can be seen in modern pets.

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This figure shows where some modern dogs get genetic information from. For example, the Australian dingo is a close relative of the singing dog of New Guinea.At the same time, Chihuahuas and Irish Terriers have traditional European ancestry

This figure shows where some modern dogs get genetic information from. For example, the Australian dingo is a close relative of the singing dog of New Guinea.At the same time, Chihuahuas and Irish Terriers have traditional European ancestry

Pontus Skoglund, research co-author and team leader of the Ancient Genomics Laboratory at the Francis Crick Institute, said: “Some of the variations seen among walking dogs on the street today originated in the Ice Age.

By the end of this period, dogs had been widely distributed in the northern hemisphere.

The types of modern dogs are derived from the evolution and reproduction of these five ancient groups.

The study, published today in the journal Science, enables researchers to track the evolution of dogs.

Studies have shown that in the early days of European dogs, there was a lot of genetic diversity, and pets originated in the Near East or Siberia.

However, this ancient genetic trait is very different in modern dogs.

The study examined the genomes of 27 dogs dating back to 10900 (left) and compared them with modern dogs and wolves (right).

The study studied the genomes of 27 dogs dating back to 10900 (left) and compared them with modern dogs and wolves (right).

Discovered the remains of a dog that “lived with humans” 20,000 years ago

Archaeologists unearthed what they think may be the oldest remains of domesticated pet dogs.

It is thought that these remains may have existed between 14,000 and 20,000 years, dating back to the first dawn of the special relationship between humans and dogs.

Although dogs are man’s best friends and one of the most domesticated animals on earth, the origin of this dynamic is still a relatively mysterious thing.

Researchers at the University of Siena in Italy hope their findings can reveal how dogs have turned from wild carnivores into loving companions.

Anders Bergström, the lead author of the Crick study, said: “If we look back four or five thousand years ago, we will find that Europe is a very diverse place in terms of dog breeding. .

“Although the European dogs we see today have such unusual shapes and forms, genetically speaking, they are only derived from a very narrow part of the diversity that existed in the past.”

In order to understand whether the turbulence in European dogs was caused by human migration, the researchers compared the dog data with the data of ancient people.

It shows that in most cases, the migration and evolution of dogs are closely related to the migration and evolution of humans, which shows that dogs have been by our side since the last ice age.

However, in Europe, there is a remarkable example of the inconsistency between human history and dog history.

Analysis shows that a single dog breed dominates Europe, replacing two dogs, but there is no obvious influx of people.

The study also found that there was very little gene flow from wolves to dogs at this time, which makes how these dogs occupy Europe remains a mystery.

Another co-author of the study, Greger Larson, said: “Dogs are our oldest and closest animal companion.

“Using the DNA of ancient dogs shows us how far our common history can be traced back, and will ultimately help us understand when and where this deep relationship was established.”

Ron Pinhasi, a writer and team leader at the University of Vienna, said: “Just as ancient DNA revolutionized our research on ancestors, it is now also doing the same research on dogs and other domestic animals. .

“Researching our animal companions will add another layer of our understanding of human history.”

Dog head 20,000 to 40,000 BC

Genetic analysis of the world’s oldest known dog remains shows that humans inhabiting Eurasia tamed it in an event between 20,000 and 40,000 years ago.

Dr. Krishna Veeramah, assistant professor of advanced chemistry at Stony Brook University, told MailOnline: “The domestication process of dogs is a very complex process involving the characteristics of multiple generations. The characteristics of dogs gradually evolved.

“The current hypothesis is that the domestication of dogs may be passive, and wolves somewhere in the world live on the outskirts of hunter-gatherer camps and feed on garbage that humans feed on.

Those wolves that are mild and less aggressive would have been more successful. Although humans did not benefit from the process at first, they will develop a symbiotic relationship over time. [mutually beneficial] The relationship with these animals eventually evolved into the dogs we see today. “

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