Dogs and Monkeys Judge People, Science Says

If you ever thought a dog was looking at you with judgment, chances are, yes... you were indeed being judged by the canine. At least it's true according to science.



Researchers have found that both dogs and capuchin monkeys prefer people who help others. Judging negatively those who don't treat their company fairly.


Here's how they went about finding this out, via Daily Mail (video of experiment down below):

First, they [researchers] designed an experiment to see if monkeys prefer people who help others. 

Capuchin monkeys were shown an actor struggling to open a container with a toy inside it. 

In one trial, the actor shows the container to the second actor, who accepts to help open it. 

In a second trial, the actor shows the container to the actor who this time refuses to help.

Afterwards, both actors offered the monkey a food reward, and the monkey chose which one to accept. 

When the second actor was helpful, the monkey didn't show any preference between taking the food from either the struggler or the helper.

However, when the second actor refused to help the struggler, the monkey preferred to take food from the struggler. 

This shows that the monkeys were judging the actors based on their helpfulness. 

In a second to find out the monkeys' reaction to fairness, two actors were given three balls each. 

Actor 1 asked for ball from actor 2, who gave them three balls. 

But when actor 2 asked for balls from actor 1, actor one gave back either three balls or none. 

Then, the actors offered the monkeys rewards just like in the previous experiment. 

The monkey showed no preference between the actors when actor 1 gave back all the balls, but did show a preference for actor 2 more often when actor 1 didn't give back all the balls. 

In a final experiment with dogs, the researchers tried to find out if dogs prefer people who help their owners. 

Like in the first experiment with the capuchin's, the dogs' owners tried to open a container. 

The owner offered the container to an actor who either helped or refused to open it, while a second actor remained passive.

Then both actors offered the dog a reward in their hands. 

The dog didn't show a preference for either actor when the first actor helped the owner open the container, but when the first actor refused to help, the the dog was more likely to accept the reward from the passive actor.

 
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