Thursday, June 25, 2009
Is That a Frown on Your Face or Are Just Feeling Guilty for Eating All Those Ribs When You Thought I Wasn't Looking?
Barnard College Prof uncovers origins of the “guilty look” in dogs in recently published article on canine cognition
Recent research on dogs has indicated more human-like forms of reasoning about what people know than has been demonstrated even in chimpanzees.
This study sheds new light on the natural human tendency to interpret animal behavior in human terms. Anthropomorphisms compare animal behavior to human behavior, and if there is some superficial similarity, then the animal behavior will be interpreted in the same terms as superficially similar human actions. This can include the attribution of higher-order emotions such as guilt or remorse to the animal.
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