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August 1979

Familial Anthropophobia in Pointer Dogs?

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1979;36(9):988-993. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1979.01780090074008

• This article assesses a dog model in terms of a proposed cross-species definition of phobia, the model referring to a strain of unstable dogs that has been produced by selection and inbreeding. The unstable dogs are contrasted with a strain of stable dogs. New findings are presented on approach and activity behavior toward three stimulus objects (man, another dog, and a sheet-covered chair) in a naturalistic setting. The fear response of unstable dogs to objects other than man habituates gradually, whereas the fear response to the sight of man is far more enduring, suggesting a relatively specific fear of man.