Dogs Only Pretend to Feel Ashamed

Geo Beats
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Despite the sorrowful and oh-so-sorry look your dog gives you after chewing a hole in your new Italian shoes, according to animal behaviorists, he or she really feels no regret.

Despite the sorrowful and oh-so-sorry look your dog gives you after chewing a hole in your new Italian shoes, according to animal behaviorists, he or she really feels no regret.

The cowering and accompanying guilty expression are most likely a reaction to the fact that you’re yelling, not that the dog is acknowledging that restyling your footwear was the wrong thing to do.

In a small scientific study, 14 dogs and their humans participated in some tests where before leaving the room, the owners told their pets not to eat a treat.

The people later returned, not always knowing what happened while they were away.

In some cases the dogs really hadn’t done anything wrong. In others, they gobbled up munchies with abandon.

Upon returning, though, the human participants sometimes scolded their canine friends regardless.

Whether the dog being chewed out had defied orders or not, they often responded to their owners’ disapproval with guilty looks.

Said the woman who conducted the experiment, “I am not saying that dogs might not feel guilt, just that the ‘guilty look’ is not an indication of it.”

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