Christopher X J. Jensen
Associate Professor, Pratt Institute

Dog license dataset opens up huge potential for understanding the dog-human mutualism

Posted 26 Jan 2013 / 0

WNYC NYC’s Top Dogs: Mapping Names & Breeds in the City

WNYC Dogs of NYC

Data sets like these, even flawed by their incompleteness (only 20% of dogs in New York City are registered) are fascinating. The human relationship with dogs has changed radically as we have urbanized as a species: I would suggest that the dominance of “toy” and “miniature” dogs reflected in the map below suggests that what we now ask from dogs has changed radically. Humans no longer need dogs to do work or to be protective (tougher neighborhoods dominated by pitbulls not withstanding), and instead needs dogs to stand in for offspring and/or social partners. The radical shifts in the social nature of human culture are reflected in our shifting relationship with dogs.

A Minor Post, Canids, Coevolution, Gene-Culture Coevolution, Geography, Human Evolution, Human Uniqueness, Mutualism, Public Policy, Radio & Podcasts, Web

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