Dr. Anna Kukekova

Associate Professor, Animal Sciences University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign




Anna Kukekova is an Associate Professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her lab is studying genetics of dogs and foxes to address questions related to animal domestication, social behavior, and dog inherited disorders. 

What can red foxes tell us about domesticated behavior?


Animal domestication provides one of the most compelling examples of the influence of genes on behavior. Although the majority of domesticated species have been domesticated historically, the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) was domesticated in a controlled experiment at the Institute of Cytology and Genetics of the Russian Academy of Sciences in the second part of the twentieth century. Unlike dogs, the foxes were selected solely for their response to humans and therefore offer many advantages for understanding genetics of domesticated behavior. I will present our recent findings in foxes and discuss these results in relation to publications in dog behavioral genetics.