Wild dogs are found in Asia, Australia and Africa. Although they live in a wide variety of habitats, they typically prefer areas where there is limited human contact.
Australian wild dogs descend from Thai wolves that lived approximately 10,000 years ago, and came to Australia approximately 3,500 to 4,000 years ago. African wild dogs live in the savannah and arid zones, as well as in forests and on mountains. Asian wild dogs once ranged throughout southern and eastern Asia, though their territory is shrinking.
Wild dogs live in a flexible social structure that consists of approximately six to 20 pack members. Each group member controls a specific home range within the territory, and some home ranges often overlap. The entire pack rarely meets, instead relying on individual visits and long distance vocal communication such as howling. The pack also communicates with one another while marking the boundaries of their territory using urine, feces, scratching and raking. Pack members maintain cohesion and separation within the pack through various methods of communication. These include facial expressions and body postures that are used to show dominance or submission among individual group members. Aggression in the pack is used to gain or maintain social positions.