18,000-year-old ice age ‘puppy’ could be world’s oldest
The 18,000-year-old animal found in the ice of the Siberian permafrost, in a perfectly preserved condition, could be the world’s oldest dog.
The two-month old canine was found in summer of 2018 in a lump of frozen ground, reports Metro. What stumped the scientists is that it sports a full set of teeth and a fur coat. The preserved animal has whiskers, eyelashes, velvety nose, thick hair, and sharp milk teeth.
It was found by Love Dalén and Dave Stanton. Since then, the duo is studying the animal to determine it’s a dog or a wolf. If it turns out to be a dog, it will be world’s oldest.
“It’s pretty special because you’re holding it and it really feels like a very recently dead animal,” Love told Metro. “But you think about it and this was an animal that lived with cave lions and mammoths and woolly rhinos. So it’s pretty awesome,” he added.
Initially, the duo thought it’s a wolf but after rounds of tests they became suspicious that it could be a dog too.
“It’s very rare to get specimens that well-preserved. It’s basically been frozen for the last 18,000 years,” he further added.
Back in June, Russian scientists found the furry head of an Ice Age wolf in Siberian permafrost. The head is about 40,000-year-old.