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Author (up) Bartal, I.B.-A.; Decety, J.; Mason, P. url  doi
  Title Empathy and Pro-Social Behavior in Rats Type Journal Article
  Year 2011 Publication Science Abbreviated Journal Science  
  Volume 334 Issue 6061 Pages 1427-1430  
  Abstract Whereas human pro-social behavior is often driven by empathic concern for another, it is unclear whether nonprimate mammals experience a similar motivational state. To test for empathically motivated pro-social behavior in rodents, we placed a free rat in an arena with a cagemate trapped in a restrainer. After several sessions, the free rat learned to intentionally and quickly open the restrainer and free the cagemate. Rats did not open empty or object-containing restrainers. They freed cagemates even when social contact was prevented. When liberating a cagemate was pitted against chocolate contained within a second restrainer, rats opened both restrainers and typically shared the chocolate. Thus, rats behave pro-socially in response to a conspecific�s distress, providing strong evidence for biological roots of empathically motivated helping behavior.  
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  Notes 10.1126/science.1210789 Approved no  
  Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Serial 5725  
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