Despite being named bear dogs, members of this family were neither bears nor dogs, but a group of their own that was related to both. Fossilised footprints of larger species show that they walked much like modern bears, their feet flat on the ground and moving the two left legs and two right legs together alternately. Smaller species lived in underground dens, and could probably burrow for prey if it outran them. Bear dogs were commonly found in Eurasia during the Oligocene, but also spread to North America where they would have fed on small rodents and rabbits, possibly climbing trees in pursuit of some prey.
Scientific name: Amphicyonidae
Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.
Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web
Discover the other animals and plants that lived during the following geological time periods.
The Amphicyonidae is an extinct family of large terrestrial carnivores belonging to the suborder Caniformia (meaning "dog-like"), which inhabited North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa from the Middle Eocene subepoch to the Pleistocene epoch 46.2—1.8 Mya, existing for approximately 44.4 million years.
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.