From wolves to dogs, the journey of the species that has evolved from a wild animal to become one of the most loved pets has been intriguing. Dogs have been our loyal companion for the last several thousand years. A latest research has revealed that 15,000 years ago, dogs migrated from East Asia to the Americas along with humans. A land crossing named Bering Land Bridge was crossed by the humans thousands of years ago and they were accompanied in the journey from East Asia by their dogs as well.
The study has been conducted by researchers from Durham University, reported CNN. The revelation was made when the archaeologist and lead author Angela Perri studied the lineage of American dogs outside the Arctic. It was found that the lineage of American dogs can be traced back to the Siberian dogs.
A research fellow at the university, Angela said that dogs were likely domesticated 23,000 years ago in Siberia. She believes that the reason behind humans and wolves coming closer was survival during the cold climates. According to her, wolves considered that scavenging from humans was a source of food. Humans on the other hand used them for fur and at times, for food as well.
Commenting about the study, Jeffrey Kidd, an associate professor of human genetics at the University of Michigan Medical School, said that it is not surprising that humans migrated along with their dogs considering the fact that dogs are an essential part of our society.
The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Monday, January 25.
Angela is now hoping to find more dog bones in Siberia which can help her with this research. According to the report, the earliest dog bone was found one hundred years ago. This bone was 15,000 years old.
This new discovery comes after the research which suggests that ice-age humans started feeding their leftover food to the wolves. The study also says that humans and wolves were also competitors during the same phase. They both preyed on deers for their survival in the Eurasia region. The findings suggest that the evolution of dogs to wolves started after humans shared food with them.
Another evidence that proves that the connection between humans and dogs goes back to thousands of years is the remains of a dog found in Sweden. The 8,400 years old remains of the dog were discovered next to the grave of its master. The dog was buried next to the man as part of the ‘grave goods,’ according to the researchers.