Aggressive bimodal communication in domestic dogs, Canis familiaris

Éloïse C. Déaux, Jennifer A. Clarke, Isabelle Charrier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
28 Downloads (Pure)


Evidence of animal multimodal signalling is widespread and compelling. Dogs' aggressive vocalisations (growls and barks) have been extensively studied, but without any consideration of the simultaneously produced visual displays. In this study we aimed to categorize dogs' bimodal aggressive signals according to the redundant/non-redundant classification framework. We presented dogs with unimodal (audio or visual) or bimodal (audio-visual) stimuli and measured their gazing and motor behaviours. Responses did not qualitatively differ between the bimodal and two unimodal contexts, indicating that acoustic and visual signals provide redundant information. We could not further classify the signal as 'equivalent' or 'enhancing' as we found evidence for both subcategories. We discuss our findings in relation to the complex signal framework, and propose several hypotheses for this signal's function.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0142975
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015

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