Erik Wilsson

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Dog puppies are born in a state of large neural immaturity; therefore, the nervous system is sensitive to environmental influences early in life. In primates and rodents, early experiences, such as maternal care, have been shown to have profound and lasting effects on the later behaviour and physiology of offspring. We hypothesised that this would also be(More)
Two professional tracking dogs were brought in at right angles to 50-m-long tracks to try to identify the clues that the dogs used to determine the direction of the tracks. When the dogs were tested on tracks laid by a walking man, they took the direction that the track-maker had moved significantly more often than predicted by random choice regardless of(More)
Early life experiences are known to shape the behavioural development of animals, and therefore events occurring during preadolescence and adolescence may have long-term effects. In dogs, this period of time may be important for later behaviour and thereby also the suitability of dogs for different working tasks. We used the breeding practice for Swedish(More)
Early experiences may alter later behavioural expressions in animals and these differences can be consistent through adulthood. In dogs, this may have a profound impact on welfare and working ability and, it is therefore interesting to evaluate how experiences during the first weeks of life contribute to shaping the long-term behaviour. We analysed data(More)
Heritability calculated for characteristics evaluated in behavioural tests can be used as a tool to select different kinds of service dogs. The evaluation was based on the test results of 13 10 German shepherds and 797 Labrador retrievers. The heritability for all evaluated characteristics of the two breeds was significantly different from zero with the(More)
The objectives of this study were to estimate genetic parameters and the influence of systematic effects on behavior test results in dogs. Behavior test results on 1,813 Labrador Retrievers (LR) and 2,757 German Shepherd Dogs (GSD) were analyzed. The behavior test included observations on courage, defense drive, prey drive, nerve stability, temperament,(More)
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