Dominance in domestic dogs

A quantitative analysis of its behavioural measures

J.A.M. Van Der Borg, M.B.H. Schilder, C.M. Vinke, Han De Vries, Odile Petit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A dominance hierarchy is an important feature of the social organisation of group living animals. Although formal and/or agonistic dominance has been found in captive wolves and free-ranging dogs, applicability of the dominance concept in domestic dogs is highly debated, and quantitative data are scarce. Therefore, we investigated 7 body postures and 24 behaviours in a group of domestic dogs for their suitability as formal status indicators. The results showed that high posture, displayed in most dyadic relationships, and muzzle bite, displayed exclusively by the highest ranking dogs, qualified best as formal dominance indicators. The best formal submission indicator was body tail wag, covering most relationships, and two low postures, covering two-thirds of the relationships. In addition, both mouth lick, as included in Schenkel's active submission, and pass under head qualified as formal submission indicators but were shown almost exclusively towards the highest ranking dogs. Furthermore, a status assessment based on changes in posture displays, i.e., lowering of posture (LoP) into half-low, low, low-on-back or on-back, was the best status indicator for most relationships as it showed good coverage (91% of the dyads), a nearly linear hierarchy (h' = 0.94, p

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0133978
Number of pages18
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume10
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Fingerprint

posture
Posture
quantitative analysis
Animals
Display devices
Dogs
dogs
Chemical analysis
Social Dominance
group behavior
wolves
Bites and Stings
social structure
Mouth
Tail
mouth
tail
Head
animals

Cite this

Van Der Borg, J.A.M. ; Schilder, M.B.H. ; Vinke, C.M. ; De Vries, Han ; Petit, Odile. / Dominance in domestic dogs : A quantitative analysis of its behavioural measures. In: PLoS ONE. 2015 ; Vol. 10, No. 8.
@article{e117d1c8635645cba3b6697580ea8e51,
title = "Dominance in domestic dogs: A quantitative analysis of its behavioural measures",
abstract = "A dominance hierarchy is an important feature of the social organisation of group living animals. Although formal and/or agonistic dominance has been found in captive wolves and free-ranging dogs, applicability of the dominance concept in domestic dogs is highly debated, and quantitative data are scarce. Therefore, we investigated 7 body postures and 24 behaviours in a group of domestic dogs for their suitability as formal status indicators. The results showed that high posture, displayed in most dyadic relationships, and muzzle bite, displayed exclusively by the highest ranking dogs, qualified best as formal dominance indicators. The best formal submission indicator was body tail wag, covering most relationships, and two low postures, covering two-thirds of the relationships. In addition, both mouth lick, as included in Schenkel's active submission, and pass under head qualified as formal submission indicators but were shown almost exclusively towards the highest ranking dogs. Furthermore, a status assessment based on changes in posture displays, i.e., lowering of posture (LoP) into half-low, low, low-on-back or on-back, was the best status indicator for most relationships as it showed good coverage (91{\%} of the dyads), a nearly linear hierarchy (h' = 0.94, p",
author = "{Van Der Borg}, J.A.M. and M.B.H. Schilder and C.M. Vinke and {De Vries}, Han and Odile Petit",
year = "2015",
doi = "10.1371/journal.pone.0133978",
language = "English",
volume = "10",
journal = "PLoS ONE",
issn = "1932-6203",
publisher = "Public Library of Science",
number = "8",

}

Dominance in domestic dogs : A quantitative analysis of its behavioural measures. / Van Der Borg, J.A.M.; Schilder, M.B.H.; Vinke, C.M.; De Vries, Han; Petit, Odile.

In: PLoS ONE, Vol. 10, No. 8, e0133978, 2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Dominance in domestic dogs

T2 - A quantitative analysis of its behavioural measures

AU - Van Der Borg, J.A.M.

AU - Schilder, M.B.H.

AU - Vinke, C.M.

AU - De Vries, Han

AU - Petit, Odile

PY - 2015

Y1 - 2015

N2 - A dominance hierarchy is an important feature of the social organisation of group living animals. Although formal and/or agonistic dominance has been found in captive wolves and free-ranging dogs, applicability of the dominance concept in domestic dogs is highly debated, and quantitative data are scarce. Therefore, we investigated 7 body postures and 24 behaviours in a group of domestic dogs for their suitability as formal status indicators. The results showed that high posture, displayed in most dyadic relationships, and muzzle bite, displayed exclusively by the highest ranking dogs, qualified best as formal dominance indicators. The best formal submission indicator was body tail wag, covering most relationships, and two low postures, covering two-thirds of the relationships. In addition, both mouth lick, as included in Schenkel's active submission, and pass under head qualified as formal submission indicators but were shown almost exclusively towards the highest ranking dogs. Furthermore, a status assessment based on changes in posture displays, i.e., lowering of posture (LoP) into half-low, low, low-on-back or on-back, was the best status indicator for most relationships as it showed good coverage (91% of the dyads), a nearly linear hierarchy (h' = 0.94, p

AB - A dominance hierarchy is an important feature of the social organisation of group living animals. Although formal and/or agonistic dominance has been found in captive wolves and free-ranging dogs, applicability of the dominance concept in domestic dogs is highly debated, and quantitative data are scarce. Therefore, we investigated 7 body postures and 24 behaviours in a group of domestic dogs for their suitability as formal status indicators. The results showed that high posture, displayed in most dyadic relationships, and muzzle bite, displayed exclusively by the highest ranking dogs, qualified best as formal dominance indicators. The best formal submission indicator was body tail wag, covering most relationships, and two low postures, covering two-thirds of the relationships. In addition, both mouth lick, as included in Schenkel's active submission, and pass under head qualified as formal submission indicators but were shown almost exclusively towards the highest ranking dogs. Furthermore, a status assessment based on changes in posture displays, i.e., lowering of posture (LoP) into half-low, low, low-on-back or on-back, was the best status indicator for most relationships as it showed good coverage (91% of the dyads), a nearly linear hierarchy (h' = 0.94, p

U2 - 10.1371/journal.pone.0133978

DO - 10.1371/journal.pone.0133978

M3 - Article

VL - 10

JO - PLoS ONE

JF - PLoS ONE

SN - 1932-6203

IS - 8

M1 - e0133978

ER -