Sunday 26th August is National Dog Day! To celebrate, we’re asking whether you knew these 10 painted dog facts below.
Unlike the much-loved domestic dog, painted dogs are threatened by habitat fragmentation which increases their contact with people & domestic animals. This results in conflict and the transmission of diseases.
Sadly, painted dogs are now listed as endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species so as part of National Dog Day 2018, we want to raise awareness about this unique species. With your help, we can help this special canine escape extinction.
10 painted dog facts:
- The painted dog has many names including African hunting dog, African wild dog, Cape hunting dog and painted wolf
- The dogs can be found in the African Savannah among grasslands and woodlands, and love playing in waterholes
- Painted dogs live in packs of up to 30 dogs with the alpha female the top dog in the pack
- When hunting the dogs use their incredible vision to locate prey and are usually spotted in the morning or at dusk
- On average, painted dogs catch their prey 80% of the time in a long, open chase
- Painted dogs are carnivores and feed on a variety of animals including impala, lechwe, wildebeest, warthog, gazelle and small animals including dik-dik, hares and cane rats
- Like domestic dogs, painted dogs are intensely social and have strong family bonds. Their priority is to protect the pack and take care of one another’s pups
- During hunters, dogs will communicate with each other using high pitched yapping calls. Their most well-known call is the “hoo” call, which can be heard from many kilometres away
- In the 1900’s, more than 500,000 dogs roamed Africa across 39 countries. Today, less than 5,000 painted dogs remain in just a few countries.
- Through human action, Africa’s Painted Dog population has been reduced to 1% of what it was previously, making them the second most endangered carnivore in Africa
Do your bit
With your help, we can try to ensure that this loveable species lives on for generations to come.