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When and why did dogs start living with humans?

When and why did dogs start living with humans?

Archaeologists recently found at the Dmanisi ancient human site in Georgia, the remains of a prehistoric hunting dog, about 1.8 million years old. It is the oldest evidence of the appearance of hounds on the site of humans.

Scientific Reports notes that the Dmanisi site is located in the south of the Caucasus, where direct evidence of the presence of hominins outside Africa was previously found.

Some time ago, Italian archaeologists from the University of Florence headed by Severio Bartolini Lucenti, with their colleagues from Georgia and Spain, found at this site the teeth and jaw parts of a large dog 1.77-1.76 million years old. This was the oldest evidence of the appearance of hounds alongside ancient humans.

Given that wild dogs moved from Asia to Europe and Africa, it turned out that they met the humans inhabiting the Caucasus as well as in Europe during the period of settlement of the Calabria region in the Pleistocene era 1.8-0.8 million years ago, when dogs came with humans and later moved with them to Africa.

Based on the features of the teeth found, the researchers determined that meat made up 70 percent of the dogs' food. They believe that these dogs were young and huge, weighing up to 30 kilograms, because they did not detect any erosion in the teeth. And they are consistent with the characteristics of the teeth of the family Canids in the Pleistocene era.

The researchers believe that the remains they found belong to an animal of the extinct Xenocyon of the genus Canis (a type of European hound), which is believed to have appeared in East Asia and later became the ancestor of today's African hunting dogs. Most of the evidence indicates that these dogs hunted en masse and attacked herds of animals.

According to the researchers, Eurasian hounds are distinguished from other large dogs by caring for and feeding only weak and sick dogs of their own species.

According to them, this may be the answer to the question of why the dog became a prehistoric human companion.

Source: RIA Novosti