African Wild Dogs Fact Habitat

Wild Dogs

Wild dogs are wild hunters spread from the vast plains of Sub-Saharan Africa to their dense forests. The animal has a speckled feather. However, some wild dogs can also be self-colored. They can also carry black, brown, red, yellow and white patterns. Each wild dogs have a white-tipped tail but has unique patterns that help herd members find each other while hunting. These are animals with big round ears and long legs. The most common wild dogs are African wild dogs.

African Wild Dogs

  • Name: African wild dog
  • Scientific name: Lycaon pictus
  • Common names: African hunting dog, African wild dog, Cape hunting dog, African painted dog, Painted wolf, Painted hunting dog
  • Size: 71 to 112 cm body, tail 28 to 40 cm
  • Lifespan: 8 to 11 years
  • Habitat: Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Weight: 18 to 35 kg
  • Population: 1400 – 5000
  • Nutrition: Carnivorous
  • Protection status:  Endangered on the IUCN Red List

Some features of the African wild dog distinguish it from other dogs. It is the most bulky African dog, although it has long legs. The average wild dog weighs 20-25 kg in East Africa and 24-22 kg in South Africa. It has a height of 61 to 76 cm from the shoulder, a body length of 33 to 51 cm and a tail of 28 to 41 cm. Females are slightly smaller than males. These animals do not have dewclaw and the middle finger pads are usually fused. Its sharp lower teeth, curved and blade-like are extremely unusual. It occurs only in the South American bush dog and the Asian wild dog. African wild dogs have different fur than other dogs. There is no thick fur inside. While the body patterns are different in each dog, most have a black snout and a black line extending from the forehead to the back. Although these wild dogs communicate by voice, they lack the facial expressions and body language seen in other dogs.



Wild Dogs

All about Wild Dogs


What Do Wild Dogs Eat?

The African wild dogs is a hypercarnivorous, that is, their diet consists of more than 70% meat. The herds prefer to hunt antelopes, but they also hunt gnu, buttoned pigs, rodents and birds. The hunting strategy depends on the goal. While snatching the antelope species, they sneak up on the flock, run one in a different direction, and bite their legs and abdomen until they fall weak. African wild dogs can speed up to 66 kilometers per hour and can fast chase for 10 to 60 minutes. Lycaon pictus has a very high prey success rate, and 60 to 90 percent of the chases result in the death of the prey. The only major predator of the African wild dog is lion. Spotted hyenas steal L. pictus carcass but do not tend to hunt dogs.

What do African Wild Dogs Eat?

African wild dogs are only carnivores and usually feed on gazelles, zebra, impala, wildebeest, rabbits, rodents and other small animals. Usually their prey is bigger or faster than themselves. However, thanks to their group hunting and long-term durability, their prey cannot easily escape.

Why are African Wild Dogs Endangered?

African wild dogs once lived in all Sub-Saharan Africa, except for the driest parts of the desert and lowland forests. Most of the remaining dogs now live in southeast Africa and South Africa. Very few adults remain and are divided into 39 subgroups. The species are classified as endangered animals. Because the herds are widely separated from each other and their numbers continue to decrease due to disease, destruction of their habitats and conflict with people. African wild dogs cannot be tamed, although there are cases when they are kept as pets.

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Scientific classification of African Wild Dogs Fact Habitat

African Wild Dogs Fact Habitat


African wild dogs "sneeze" to vote on herd decisions. Sneezing takes place through the nostrils and indicates confirmation or agreement. When a herd meets and the dominant sneezes, it's time to leave for hunting. If a less dominant dog sneezes, hunting will not occur unless enough members of the group sneeze.
These dogs are quite social, and they are known for sharing food and to aid ill or weak members. The dogs communicate by actions, vocalizations or touch, and their social interactions are very common. African wild dogs hunt in cooperate, formidable packs of around 6 to 20 animals or more. There were bigger packs of more hunting dogs before them started becoming endangered. The pack of dogs hunt antelopes and can easily tackle down larger preys such as wild boars, more if they are already injured or ill.
African wild dogs form strong social ties and coexist with adults and offspring in the herd. The average herd is between 4 and 9 adults but much bigger herds can appear. The dominating female is usually the oldest. The dominant man is the oldest or the strongest. Typically, only dominant double breeds. Usually only one baby is born annually. Dogs breed in South Africa in April or July but East African herds do not have a fixed breeding season. Mating is short. Pregnancy lasts from 69 to 73 days. An African wild dog can have between 6 and 26 puppies and this is the biggest number of any dog breed. The mother stays with the offspring and does not bring other herd members closer until the offspring eat solid food (3-4 weeks old). The prey eat the offspring first and lose those priorities when they are one year old. The average lifespan of a wild dog is 8 to 11 years.

African Wild Dogs Fact Habitat

African Wild Dogs Fact Habitat

Scientific Classification

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