Well, anything can happen in the year 2020! Now, an extremely rare breed of ‘singing’ dog, believed to have been extinct for almost 50 years, has reappeared again. Known for its unique howls, these rare dogs called the New Guinea singing dogs have been found in the highlands of West New Guinea, also known as Papua, in Indonesia. Also Read - Ayesha Jhulka's Dog Dies at 6; Complaint Filed Against Caretaker For Killing The Dog
Notably, these canines are known for producing a harmonic sound that has been compared to the calls of a humpback whale. Only 200-300 captive New Guinea singing dogs exist in conservation centres. Also Read - International Dog Day: Scientifically-Proven Reasons to Pet a Dog
No one had seen these dogs in the wild until 2016 when an expedition located and studied 15 wild dogs in the remote highlands of the western side of New Guinea. In 2018, a research team collected their detailed biological samples, to determine whether they are actually the singing dogs. Also Read - Watch: Punjab Man Intentionally Runs His Car Over Dog, Maneka Gandhi Calls Out the Cruel Act
Finally, after 2 years, a research was published on Monday, which showed the highland dogs and New Guinea singing dogs have very similar genome sequences and are much more closely linked to each other than any other canine.
The New Guinean singing dogs’ genome has degraded because of inbreeding, and the highland wild dogs’ genome contains bits from local village dogs, but they are essentially the same dog, explains study co-author Elaine Ostrander, a geneticist at the U.S. National Human Genome Research Institute.
“They look most related to a population of conservation biology new guinea singing dogs that were descended from eight dogs brought to the United States many, many, many years ago,” Ostrander said.