Submitted by mofongo in AnimalRights (edited )

Researchers at the DogStudies lab at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History have shown that dogs possess some "metacognitive" abilities - specifically, they are aware of when they do not have enough information to solve a problem and will actively seek more information, similarly to primates. To investigate this, the researchers created a test in which dogs had to find a reward - a toy or food - behind one of two fences. They found that the dogs looked for additional information significantly more often when they had not seen where the reward was hidden.

In the field of comparative psychology, researchers study animals in order to learn about the evolution of various traits and what this can tell us about ourselves. At the DogStudies lab at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, project leader Juliane Bräuer studies dogs to make these comparisons. In a recent study published in the journal Learning & Behavior, Bräuer and colleague Julia Belger, now of the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, explore whether dogs have metacognitive abilities - sometimes described as the ability to "know what one knows" - and in particular whether they are aware of what information they have learned and whether they need more information.

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-11/mpif-dkw111918.php

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