Symbolic, Indexical, and Iconic Communication with Domestic Dogs

  • Andrew M. Olney Institute for Intelligent Systems & Department of Psychology, University of Memphis, USA.
Keywords: Zoosemiotics, Icon, Index


Recent studies in canine communication are reviewed using Deacon’s framework of iconic, indexical, and symbolic reference. The presented analysis examines these studies using Deacon’s notion of interpretant, taking into account the evolutionary and perceptual capacities of the dog. By taking these dispositions and capacities into account, the conclusions that have been drawn in current studies of canine communication with respect to Deacon’s framework are critically evaluated. The analysis proceeds by investigating clusters of studies that align with symbolic, indexical, or iconic reference.

How to Cite
Olney, A. (2018). Symbolic, Indexical, and Iconic Communication with Domestic Dogs. HUMANA.MENTE Journal of Philosophical Studies, 6(24), 79-98. Retrieved from