Communication and Perception
Nyctereutes procyonoides uses latrines to communicate with other members of the species. A latrine is a definite site where an entire group of raccoon dogs will both urinate and defecate. Research has suggested that raccoon dogs use the latrine for information exchange among family members as well strangers. The animals modify their behavior based on olfactory recognition of conspecific individuals when they encounter one another.
Raccoon dogs are vocal canids. However, they do not, like all other representatives of the order, bark. They may whine, whimper, or mew; these are all responses coupled with friendly or submissive behavior. They may growl when frightened or when being aggressive.
In addition to scent cues and vocal communication, these animals use some body postures--such as tail position--to indicate dominance and readiness to mate. Tactile communication if probably important between parents and offspring, as well as between mates.
Communication Channels: visual ; tactile ; acoustic ; chemical
Other Communication Modes: scent marks
Perception Channels: visual ; acoustic
- Yamamoto, I. 1984. Latrine Utilization and Feces Recognition in the Raccoon Dog. Journal of Ethology, 2: 47-54.