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2019-01-07. Dog breeds really do have distinct personalities—and they’re rooted in DNA.

posted Jan 12, 2019, 6:13 PM by Alan Gould
By Elizabeth Pennisi, Science Magazine. [https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/01/dog-breeds-really-do-have-distinct-personalities-and-they-re-rooted-dna 0] For GSS Losing Biodiversity chapter 4. Excerpt: American Kennel Club descriptions of dog breeds can read like online dating profiles: The border collie is a workaholic; the German shepherd will put its life on the line for loved ones. Now, in the most comprehensive study of its kind to date, scientists have shown that such distinct breed traits are actually rooted in a dog’s genes. The findings may shed light on human behaviors as well. ...When the dog genome was sequenced in 2005, scientists thought they would quickly be able to pin down the genes that give every breed its hallmark personality. But they found so much variation even within a breed that they could never study enough dogs to get meaningful results. So in the new study, Evan MacLean, a comparative psychologist at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Noah Snyder-Mackler at the University of Washington in Seattle, and colleagues began by looking at behavioral data for about 14,000 dogs from 101 breeds. The analyses come from the Canine Behavioral Assessment & Research Questionnaire (C-BARQ; https://vetapps.vet.upenn.edu/cbarq/), ...C-BARQ asks questions like, “What does your dog do when a stranger comes to the door?” to allow owners to objectively characterize 14 aspects of their pet’s personalities, including trainability, attachment, and aggression. Since the survey was developed in 2003, more than 50,000 owners have participated....