Humans are said to be pro-social beings, which means that we humans can give without receiving a benefit in return. Other species have shown similar behavior, however it was not until recently that a study was done to prove that dogs also are pro-social beings; meaning in some cases, dogs share stuff with one another.
Dogs are known to be social and cooperative species. They operate in packs and support one another for example some hunt while others care and support the young. Due to the previous reasons it was presumed that dogs too are pro-social beings, however it wasn’t until recently that the following study was conducted to prove so.
Read also on a study that was made to prove dog’s loyalty
The University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna conducted a study to see whether dogs understand the concept of giving or not. So to begin the study researchers trained 16 dogs to pull a string that was attached to a tray pulling system. Once they pull the string, a tray would be delivered to the dog.
After the dogs were trained, each pair was put in two separate cages side by side. One of the dogs had the string and the other was put with nothing. The dog with the string had the full power to either receive an empty tray and the other a treat, or to receive a treat and the other an empty tray. The results were astonishing that some dogs actually choose to receive nothing! What was even more astonishing is that when the two dogs knew each other from before, it was more probable that the dog would choose to give his friend the treat.
Results from this study show that our furry friends look out for each other similarly to the way we behave towards people we know, especially family and friends. The ability of what dogs can understand and do is unimaginable and beyond expectations as always.
Written by: Farah Khaled