Painted Dog Fun Facts

Today at Light Future Art, we’re heading over to Africa to explore some fun facts about the African painted dog!

Adult African Painted Dog

 

1. The painted dog is known by many names, such as the “African wild dog”, “Cape hunting dog”, and “African painted wolf”. Today, “painted dog” and “African wild dog” are used just as frequently and most often.
2. Painted dogs hunt in a team. They have great stamina and can maintain a speed of about 35 miles per hour for over three miles and can, for shorter distances, run over 40 miles per hour. Some of the dogs in the group chase close to their prey while others keep a wider circle.
3. To get excited about a hunt, painted dogs engage in playful behavior where they vocalize and circle around one another, essentially psyching each other up. They have a very high hunting success rate — almost 80%.

Sitting Painted Dog4. No two painted dogs have the same coat pattern. Similar to zebras and cheetahs, the pattern of each painted dog is different and helps to identify each individual. It also helps them camouflage with the savannah.
5. It is impossible for painted dogs to be domesticated. They are distrustful of all other animals and especially humans (smart!) so it is unlikely that they will ever be able to follow the same path that wolves did when they became domesticated.
6. Painted dogs almost never fight for dominance in their group and are remarkably altruistic and group-minded, by bringing food for the sick, injured, or elderly who cannot hunt for themselves and helping to raise pups.

Painted Dog Pup7. The litters of African painted dogs are very large compared to those of other wild canines. Sometimes one litter may have as many as 20 pups. The average litter size in 10 pups.
8. While the packs of painted dogs are led by an alpha female, who is usually the only one to breed, pups always are given more importance than the alpha (as it should be) when it comes to food.
9. Males stay with their natal pack once reaching maturity while females leave to form or find new packs. Once the alpha female of a pack dies, the pack splits apart to join new packs.

 

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