Intraspecific social play behavior of adult dogs above three years of age in an outer-social context
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A lot of literature and studies exist regarding puppy play and adults playing in a social context to strengthen their social structure. However, this thesis wanted to raise the question whether or not social play also occurs among adult dogs not knowing each other, just meeting randomly for the first time. This has not been investigated before, although this subject could reveal important information in order to avoid extra stress for dogs and their owners alike in their every-day life. Therefore, the main aim of this thesis was to investigate whether or not adult dogs exhibit social play in an outer-social context. Consequently, the playing behavior amongst 36 adult dogs above the age of three years were observed, investigated and evaluated. These animals have never met before, so no social structure existed. The dogs were both, pure-breed and mixed-breed and male and females were balanced. Only dogs above the age of three years and not showing any severe biting behavior during social contacts were selected.