Faux Foxes: Fox Domestication and Pet Ownership | Chapter IV: Test of Hypotheses

Test of Hypotheses

Hypothesis 1: Pet Dogs Compared to Pet Domesticated Foxes

a. Attitudes toward dogs and pet-dog ownership (Pet Dog Attitude Score) will be more positive than attitudes toward domesticated foxes and pet domesticated fox ownership (Pet Fox Attitude Score).

Attitudes toward dogs and pet-dog ownership (Pet Dog Attitude Score,) (M = 4.48, SD = 1.0,) were more positive than attitudes toward domesticated foxes and pet domesticated fox ownership (Pet Fox Attitude Score,) (M = 3.48, SD = 1.45).

b. Attitudes toward dogs and pet-dog ownership (Pet Dog Attitude Score) will predict attitudes toward domesticated foxes and pet domesticated fox ownership (Pet Fox Attitude Score).

Attitudes toward dogs and pet-dog ownership (Pet Dog Attitude Score) and attitudes toward domesticated foxes and pet domesticated fox ownership (Pet Fox Attitude Score) were significantly, positively correlated to each other (r = 0.34, p < .001).

c. Attitudes toward dogs and pet-dog ownership (Pet Dog Attitude Score) will predict attitudes toward pet-dog breeding ethics and pet-dog ownership laws, but not predict attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics and pet domesticated fox ownership laws.

Attitudes toward dogs and pet-dog ownership (Pet Dog Attitude Score) were significantly, positively correlated with attitudes toward pet-dog breeding ethics (r = 0.23, p = .01), pet-dog ownership laws (r = 0.34, p < .001), and wild fox breeding (r = 0.17, p = .045), but not significantly correlated with pet domesticated fox ownership laws (r = 0.13, p > .05).

d. Attitudes toward domesticated foxes and pet domesticated fox ownership (Pet Fox Attitude Score) will predict attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics and pet domesticated fox ownership laws, but not predict attitudes toward pet-dog breeding ethics and pet-dog ownership laws.

Attitudes toward domesticated foxes and pet domesticated fox ownership (Pet Fox Attitude Score) were significantly, positively correlated with attitudes toward pet-dog ownership laws (r = 0.24, p = 0.1), wild fox breeding ethics (r = .33, p < .001), and pet domesticated fox ownership laws (r = .39, p < .001), but not significantly correlated with attitudes toward pet-dog breeding ethics (r = 0.16, p > .05).

e. Participants will rate dogs as a good pet more than domesticated foxes.

Participants rated dogs as a good pet 34.2% more than domesticated foxes (M = 2.97, M = 4.6, respectively).

f. Participants will prefer wanting a dog as a pet more than a domesticated fox.

Participants preferred wanting a dog as a pet 21.2% more than a domesticated fox (M = 4.44, M = 3.38, respectively).

Hypothesis 2: Ethical and Legal Attitudes

a. Participants will be more likely to agree that it is ethical to selectively breed pet dogs, eventually altering them to suit our needs, than it is ethical to selectively breed wild foxes, eventually altering them to suit our needs.

Participants were 7.6% more likely to agree that it is ethical to selectively breed pet dogs, eventually altering them to suit our needs, than it is ethical to selectively breed wild foxes, eventually altering them to suit our needs (M = 2.84, M = 2.46, respectively).

b. Participants will be more likely to agree that it should be legal in the United States to own a pet dog, than it should be legal in the United States to own a pet domesticated fox.

Participants were 24.6% more likely to agree that it should be legal in the United States to own a pet dog, than it should be legal in the United States to own a pet domesticated fox (M = 4.48, M = 3.25, respectively).

c. Attitudes toward pet-dog breeding ethics will predict attitudes toward pet-dog ownership laws, more than attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics and pet domesticated fox ownership laws.

Attitudes toward pet-dog breeding ethics were not correlated with attitudes toward pet-dog ownership laws (r = 0.04, p > .05), making less of a correlation than attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics (r = 0.62, p < .001) and pet domesticated fox ownership laws (r = 0.31, p = .001) in which there was a significant, positive relation.

d. Attitudes toward pet-dog ownership laws will not predict attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics or pet domesticated fox ownership laws.

Attitudes toward pet-dog ownership laws were significantly, positively correlated with attitudes toward pet domesticated fox ownership laws (r = 0.21, p = 0.18), but not wild fox breeding ethics (r = 0.1, p = .16).

e. Participant attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics will predict attitudes toward pet domesticated fox ownership laws.

Participant attitudes toward wild fox breeding ethics were significantly correlated with attitudes toward pet domesticated fox ownership laws (r = 0.61, p < 0.001).

Hypothesis 3: Perceptions of Wild to Domesticated Fox Images

a. When shown a series of images that represent the transformation of a wild fox into a domesticated fox in images, participants will most frequently perceive the physical transformations of domestication in the earliest transformation images.

When shown a series of images that represent the transformation of a wild fox into a domesticated fox in images, participants most frequently perceived the physical transformations of domestication in the earliest transformation images. The most frequent response to Items 27, 34, 41, and 55 in Section IV A was Figure C, and in Section IV B, C, and E was Figure B.

b. Fox images with smaller stop angles, more shortened body part lengths, and/or more greatly curled ears and tails will be rated as more domesticated.

Fox images with smaller stop angles, more shortened body part lengths, and/or more greatly curled ears and tails were rated as more domesticated. The most frequent response to Items 28, 35, 42, and 56 was Figure E.

c. Fox images with selectively-bred coat colors, (piebald, platinum, or Georgian white,) will have higher ratings as more domesticated than foxes with wild coat colors, (red or silver.)

Fox images with selectively-bred coat colors, (piebald, platinum, or Georgian white,) had higher ratings as more domesticated than foxes with wild coat colors, (red or silver) 82.3% of the time.

d. Fox images with smaller stop angles, more shortened body part lengths, and/or more greatly curled ears and tails will be rated as more attractive.

Foxes images with smaller stop angles, more shortened body part lengths, and/or more greatly curled ears and tails were rated as less attractive. The most frequent response to Items 29, 36, 43, and 57 was Figure A.

e. Fox images with selectively-bred coat colors, (piebald, platinum, or Georgian white,) will be rated as more attractive than foxes with wild coat colors, (red or silver.)

Fox images with selectively-bred coat colors, (piebald, platinum, or Georgian white,) were rated as more attractive than foxes with wild coat colors, (red or silver) 54.17% of the time.

f. Participants will most frequently have higher ratings for foxes with smaller stop angles, more shortened body part lengths, and/or more greatly curled ears and tails as a pet.

Participants most frequently had higher ratings for foxes with smaller stop angles, more shortened body part lengths, and/or more greatly curled ears and tails as a pet (M = 3.24, M = 2.68, M = 3.39, respectively).

g. Participants will most frequently have higher ratings for foxes with selectively-bred coat colors, (piebald, platinum, or Georgian white,) than foxes with wild coat colors, (red or silver,) as a pet.

Participants most frequently had higher ratings for foxes with selectively-bred coat colors, (piebald, platinum, or Georgian white,) than foxes with wild coat colors, (red or silver,) as a pet. Participants preferred foxes with domesticated fur colors 65.63% of the time.

Hypothesis 4: Knowledge of the Farm-Fox Experiment

Fewer than 5% of participants will indicate having prior knowledge of the Farm-Fox Experiment conducted by the Institute of Cytology and Genetics of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Novisibirsk, Russia.

4.12% of participants indicated having prior knowledge of the Farm-Fox Experiment conducted by the Institute of Cytology and Genetics of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Novisibirsk, Russia.


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