Your Dog’s Personality May Have Little To Do With Its Breed

Your Dog’s Personality May Have Little To Do With Its Breed

Study confirms what pet fans know — each and every pup is actually an personal.

Numerous of the common stereotypes about the actions of golden retrievers, poodles or schnauzers, for illustration, aren’t supported by science, in accordance to a new study.

“There is a big quantity of behavioral variation in just about every breed, and at the stop of the day, just about every doggy seriously is an unique,” stated analyze co-writer and University of Massachusetts geneticist Elinor Karlsson.

She reported pet house owners enjoy to discuss about their dog’s personality, as illustrated by some house owners at a New York pet dog park.

Elizabeth Kelly reported her English springer spaniel was “friendly, but she’s also form of the queen bee.” Suly Ortiz explained her yellow Lab as “really calm, lazy and shy.”

And Rachel Kim’s blended-breed doggy is “a lot of distinctive dogs, persona intelligent — super independent, actually affectionate with me and my spouse, but fairly, very suspicious of other persons, other pet dogs.”

That kind of enthusiasm from pet homeowners motivated Karlsson’s most recent scientific inquiry. She required to know to what extent are behavioral patterns inherited — and how considerably are pet breeds related with exclusive and predictable behaviors?

The remedy: When physical traits these kinds of as a greyhound’s long legs or a Dalmatian’s spots are clearly inherited, breed is not a robust predictor of any individual dog’s personality.

The researchers’ function, posted Thursday in the journal Science, marshals a large dataset to get to these conclusions — the most ever compiled, mentioned Adam Boyko, a geneticist at Cornell College, who was not included in the review.

Canines turned humanity’s ideal buddy a lot more than 14,000 a long time back, as the only animal domesticated ahead of the arrival of agriculture.

But the idea of dog breeds is significantly a lot more modern. All around 160 decades in the past, folks began to selectively breed dogs to have particular constant actual physical qualities, like coat texture and shade and ear form.

The scientists surveyed more than 18,000 puppy homeowners and analyzed the genomes of about 2,150 of their canines to glimpse for styles.

They observed that some behaviors — this kind of as howling, pointing and demonstrating friendliness to human strangers —do have at least some genetic basis. But that inheritance isn’t strictly handed down alongside breed lines.

For example, they observed golden retrievers that really don’t retrieve, stated co-writer Kathryn Lord, who studies animal behavior with Karlsson.

Some breeds, these as huskies and beagles, could clearly show a greater tendency to howl. But a lot of of these puppies never, as both the operator study and genetic facts confirmed.

The scientists could locate no genetic foundation for aggressive behaviors nor a url to unique breeds.

“The correlation amongst dog behavior and puppy breed is significantly lessen than most envisioned,” mentioned Jeff Kidd, a geneticist at the University of Michigan, who experienced no position in the investigate.


AP reporter Emma H. Tobin in New York contributed to this report.


Abide by Christina Larson on Twitter: @larsonchristina


The Connected Push Health and Science Office gets assist from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Office of Science Education and learning. The AP is solely accountable for all articles.