A Multi-Isotope Investigation of Human and Dog Mobility and Diet in the Pre-Colonial Antilles

Jason E. Laffoon, Menno L.P. Hoogland, Gareth R. Davies, Corinne L. Hofman

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The complex relationships between humans and dogs (Canis lupus familiaris) have a very deep and unique history. Dogs have accompanied humans as they colonised much of the world, and were introduced via human agency into the insular Caribbean where they became widespread throughout the Ceramic Age. It is likely that the dynamic interactions between humans, dogs, and their environments in the Caribbean were spatially, chronologically, and socially variable. However, almost no research has specifically addressed the nature, or potential variability, of human/dog interactions in this region. This study presents isotopic (strontium and carbon) evidence bearing on human and dog paleomobility and paleodietary patterns in the pre-colonial Caribbean. The isotope results illustrate a generally high degree of correspondence between human and dog dietary practices at all analysed sites but also slight differences in the relative importance of different dietary inputs. Striking parallels are also observed between the human and dog mobility patterns and shed light on broader networks of social interaction and exchange. Lastly, the paper addresses the possible utility and relevance of canine isotope data as proxies for inferring past human behaviours.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalEnvironmental Archaeology
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 9 May 2017

Fingerprint

isotope
diet
interaction
history
human behavior
evidence
strontium
dog
Diet
Dog
Antilles
Isotopes
ceramics
carbon
Interaction

Keywords

  • carbon isotopes
  • diet
  • dogs
  • humans
  • Mobility
  • strontium isotopes

Cite this

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A Multi-Isotope Investigation of Human and Dog Mobility and Diet in the Pre-Colonial Antilles. / Laffoon, Jason E.; Hoogland, Menno L.P.; Davies, Gareth R.; Hofman, Corinne L.

In: Environmental Archaeology, 09.05.2017, p. 1-17.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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