Domestic dogs, Canis lupus familiaris
, are the most widespread carnivore on the planet. While we know much about breed-specific characteristics, there is still much we do not know about the ecology of free-roaming domestic dogs, which are quite possibly the largest constituents of the global dog population. Free-roaming domestic dogs are of public health and conservation concern because of their potential to transmit diseases, such as rabies, to both people and wildlife. Understanding domestic dog ecology, and how it may be impacted by interventions, such as rabies vaccination, is vital for such disease control efforts. Between 2010 and 2013, I collected data on 2,649 dogs is to characterize free-roaming domestic dog ecology through dog demography, health, body condition and ownership practices, and investigate the effect of vaccination on population dynamics. I used survival analyses, endocrine metrics, stable isotope analysis of dog hair, and household surveys to describe dog life in four rural villages near Serengeti National Park. Free-roaming dogs such as these have one paw in nature and one paw in the village, existing in the context of their human owners as well as the surrounding wildlife.