Scientists Discover 18,000-Year-Old Puppy In Siberia

November 27, 2019

Russian scientists have recently announced the discovery of what they believe to be an 18,000-year-old puppy found in the Siberian permafrost.

18 thousand year old puppy siberia
Credit: Sergey Fedorov / The Siberian Times

The two-month-old puppy's full-body, hair, muzzle, whiskers and even eyelashes were preserved by the frozen soil.

But detailed DNA tests have so far failed to establish its species. Initial genome sequencing carried by Swedish Centre for Palaeogenetics (CPG) surprised researchers in that it failed to define if the 18,000-year-old puppy was a wolf or a dog.

"We were excited about it but we had a healthy dose of skepticism until we radiocarbon-dated it," said Love Dalén, professor of Evolutionary Genetics in Sweden. "Obviously, when we got the results that it was 18,000 years old, that changes everything. When we got that result, it was amazing. 18,000 years ago is an interesting time period where we think a lot of stuff is happening with both wolves and dogs genetically.

18 thousand year old puppy siberia
Credit: Sergey Fedorov / The Siberian Times

"It could be a very early modern wolf or very early dog or a late Pleistocene wolf," Dalén added.

Dr. Sergey Fedorov, an ancient canine expert from the North-Eastern Federal University, is looking forward to further testing on the dog which has been named "Dogor", a Yakutian word for "friend."

"This is intriguing, what if it's a dog? We can't wait to get results from further tests," Fedorov said.

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