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Author (up) Trösch, M.; Pellon, S.; Cuzol, F.; Parias, C.; Nowak, R.; Calandreau, L.; Lansade, L. url  doi
  Title Horses feel emotions when they watch positive and negative horse-human interactions in a video and transpose what they saw to real life Type Journal Article
  Year 2020 Publication Animal Cognition Abbreviated Journal Anim. Cogn.  
  Volume 23 Issue 4 Pages 643-653  
  Abstract Animals can indirectly gather meaningful information about other individuals by eavesdropping on their third-party interactions. In particular, eavesdropping can be used to indirectly attribute a negative or positive valence to an individual and to adjust one's future behavior towards that individual. Few studies have focused on this ability in nonhuman animals, especially in nonprimate species. Here, we investigated this ability for the first time in domestic horses (Equus caballus) by projecting videos of positive and negative interactions between an unknown human experimenter (a “positive” experimenter or a “negative” experimenter) and an actor horse. The horses reacted emotionally while watching the videos, expressing behavioral (facial expressions and contact-seeking behavior) and physiological (heart rate) cues of positive emotions while watching the positive video and of negative emotions while watching the negative video. This result shows that the horses perceived the content of the videos and suggests an emotional contagion between the actor horse and the subjects. After the videos were projected, the horses took a choice test, facing the positive and negative experimenters in real life. The horses successfully used the interactions seen in the videos to discriminate between the experimenters. They touched the negative experimenter significantly more, which seems counterintuitive but can be interpreted as an appeasement attempt, based on the existing literature. This result suggests that horses can indirectly attribute a valence to a human experimenter by eavesdropping on a previous third-party interaction with a conspecific.  
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  Series Volume Series Issue Edition  
  ISSN 1435-9456 ISBN Medium  
  Area Expedition Conference  
  Notes Approved no  
  Call Number Equine Behaviour @ team @ Trösch2020 Serial 6649  
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