Friday, September 16, 2011
Okay, so now we got that out of the way, and I can start talking about what neoteny is and also give you some examples. And what it is is when an adult of a species still has some juvenile traits, even after being all grown up. So in other words, it's an adult that still looks like a baby.
So for example, herding dogs were bred to control herds and flocks, and they do this by using the hunting instinct of wolves, except they don't actually hurt their "prey." Scent hounds were developed to chase their prey and corner it, but then let the humans do the killing. Also, a lot of these hounds make very cute pets because of their floppy ears and wrinkly faces.
And guess where the basenji is in this whole list! The source I read said that basenjis have the least neoteny of all because they were bred to hunt on an equal level with their people, and they know how to go out and hunt without much training or being told how to do it.