Vincent and Dante, African Painted Dogs

December 29, 2023

Lincoln Park Zoo is pleased to announce the arrival of two male African painted dogs. Vincent and Dante now make up a pack with Frida, who is their littermate from Zoo Knoxville. This is a reunion of siblings!

The three canines were born on January 2, 2019. They’ll all turn 5 years old this Tuesday—and if you’re able to come to the zoo that day, it will be a fantastic opportunity to meet them and see their intense group dynamics as they navigate special enrichment.

African painted dogs are carnivores native to sub-Saharan Africa. They live in packs led by a monogamous breeding pair and communicate through different types of vocalizations, including barking, whining, cooing, and twittering. Each dog has a unique coat pattern, just like a human fingerprint.

These dogs hunt in the early morning and evening to avoid the heat of the day. After a successful foray, they return to the pack to feed regurgitated food to young and old dogs and any other members who were unable to participate.

This species is dwindling in the wild due to habitat fragmentation, which leads to conflict with humans as well as disease transmission. Climate change is also a factor, impacting reproductive success.

painted dogs dante, vincent, frida

Image courtesy of Cassy Kutilek

Lincoln Park Zoo participates in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ African Painted Dog Species Survival Plan®, which manages populations in zoos. The zoo is also involved with AZA’s African Painted Dog Saving Animals from Extinction (SAFE) program, which works to conserve these animals in the wild.

Next time you stop by the African painted dog habitat on the south side of Regenstein African Journey, say hello to Dante, who can be identified by the white patches on his back, and Vincent, who is more blond the other dogs. Frida is the darkest.

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