Monday, April 21, 2014

Some Truths About Cats and Dogs

Well, mostly about dogs. It seems that cats are notoriously difficult research subjects.

Dogs, claim animal cognition researchers:

We are living in a golden age of canine cognition. Nearly a dozen laboratories around the world study the dog mind, and in the past decade scientists have published hundreds of articles on the topic. Researchers have shown that Fido can learn hundreds of words, may be capable of abstract thought, and possesses a rudimentary ability to intuit what others are thinking, a so-called theory of mind once thought to be uniquely human. Miklósi himself has written an entire textbook on the canine mind—and he’s a cat person.

Dogs understand the notion of pointing, apparently. Chimps, our high IQ cousins can't understand it. Cats too seem to get it, but they don't seem to be able to count to three, though fish can. Mostly, though, cats would really just rather not participate in your experiment.