Scientists have found the dog's closest relative and revealed the discovery
Japanese scientists have announced that they have found the closest relative of the dog, whose last representative died not so long ago. They said their discovery changes the theory of the origin of these animals.
According to PHYS.org, the ancestor of modern dogs was the Japanese wolf (Canis lupus hodophilax). It was relatively small and usually had a reddish color.
According to experts, Canis lupus hodophilax, in turn, was a subspecies of the gray wolf. The last representative of Canis lupus hodophilax was killed by Japanese farmers on an island in 1905.
The genetic closeness of this animal and modern dogs is evidenced by its DNA, which was extracted from the bones of the Japanese wolf.
Scientists compared it with the DNA of wolves, dogs, and foxes. They found out that this DNA belongs to "a unique evolutionary branch of wolves that arose somewhere between 20,000 and 40,000 years ago. Some of these ancient wolves evolved into Japanese wolves, while others evolved into dogs."
Based on the data obtained, Japanese researchers put forward a version that the ancestor of dogs did not come from the Middle East or Europe, as previously thought, but from East Asia.