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Exploring interspecies sensemaking: dog tracking and multispecies ethnography

By Clara Mancini, Janet van der Linden, Jon Bryan, Andrew Stuart

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The domestic use of tracking technology with pets is on the rise, yet is under-researched. We investigate how tracking practices reconfigure human-dog relationships changing both humans and dogs. We question the sensemaking mechanisms by which both humans and dogs engage in context-based meaningful exchanges via the technology’s mediation. We show how an indexical semiotic perspective could inform the development of interspecies technology. Finally, we discuss the methodological issues raised by doing research with animals and propose an interspecies semiotics which integrates animal companions and animal researchers’ accounts into ethnographic observation.


Marcy Wilhelm-South

Purdue University

Date 2012
Pages 143-152
Conference Title Ubicomp 2012
Language English
Cite this work

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Dogs
  2. Human-animal relationships
  3. Mammals
  4. Pet ownership