We met the world’s first domesticated foxes

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  • Published on:  9/11/2018
  • This week, we meet the very cute and very bizarre result of an almost 60-year-long experiment: they’re foxes that have been specially bred for their dog-like friendliness toward people. We do a little behavior research of our own, and discover what scientists continue to learn from the world’s most famous experiment in domestication. The fox experiment continues under the supervision of Lyudmila Trut at the Institute of Cytology and Genetics. Her book “How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog)”, co-authored by Lee Alan Dugatkin, details the history and science behind the experiment.

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Comment

  • Verge Science
    Verge Science  3 months ago+10157

    Should we be domesticating wild animals?

  • Emily Gray
    Emily Gray 3 hours ago

    This is fascinating but there are so many dogs and cats in shelters let’s sort them out before we go domesticating a whole new species.

  • Cyk0fox
    Cyk0fox 12 hours ago

    (Speaks foreign language)

  • Jenna The Pig
    Jenna The Pig 13 hours ago

    Why do I hav a feeling that there is something shady going on...

  • Pete Mulhearn
    Pete Mulhearn 15 hours ago

    One factor that wasn't mentioned in the comparison between domesticating wolves and domesticating foxes was that wolves are a pack animal and foxes are not. A domesticated wolf, i.e.dog, accepts humans as part of its pack and human behavior, from the dog's point of view is that of the pack. This pack behaviour is alien to a fox which lives most of its adult life as a lone individual. A pet fox is more akin to a pet cat rather than a dog even though the physical similarities are more those of the latter.

  • Geod23
    Geod23 15 hours ago

    I think the reason dogs developed a strong attachment bond is because of the pack mentality. Dogs and wolves are naturally extremely social, while foxes generally run in very small family groups or entirely solo.

  • daniel avelar
    daniel avelar 18 hours ago

    Cats are planning world domination, so stop making more!;

  • Angelo Thiccy
    Angelo Thiccy 18 hours ago

    Doesn't have nine tails...

  • Doglexus 123
    Doglexus 123 21 hours ago

    HEY KIds WAnnA sEe MY BeAR

  • Glanced
    Glanced 22 hours ago

    U guys haven't seen riot the red fox or Loki the red fox

  • Glanced
    Glanced 22 hours ago

    Cutie lil foxy

  • Aryo Shatria
    Aryo Shatria yesterday

    If someone wondering who is that russian guy its belyaev instead of searching on subtitles and comes up (speaks foreign language)

  • Morgan Freeman
    Morgan Freeman yesterday

    What does the fox say ...

  • Calvin Bottoms
    Calvin Bottoms yesterday

    Their tails are so poofy.

  • LadyHeathersLair
    LadyHeathersLair yesterday

    "Domestication Syndrome" You should read about it because it is "wild". Nice pun.

  • Rodney Mitchell
    Rodney Mitchell yesterday

    Dogs are not domesticated wolfs. Dogs and wolf share a close ancestor.

  • Water Fall
    Water Fall yesterday

    Geez

  • Patric Stahl
    Patric Stahl yesterday

    They should try to breed friendly humans instead...

  • Khalid Mohamed
    Khalid Mohamed yesterday+1

    9 tails is that you?

  • R r
    R r yesterday+1

    You're HUNDRES OF YEARS late