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狗能判断你是否值得信任

Dogs can tell if you're untrustworthy
狗能判断你是否值得信任

Dogs may not seem terribly bright when they're chasing their own tails, but in many ways they are clever creatures. In particular, they are very socially aware, both of humans and of each other.

当狗追逐自己的尾巴时,它们似乎显得有点笨,但在很多情况下,它们却是非常聪明的动物。尤其是在社交意识方面,无论是与人类还是与同类相处。

Many studies have reported that they can sense human emotions. Recent research has found that they can tell the difference between happy and angry faces, and even show jealousy.

很多研究都发现,它们可以感知人类的情绪。而最新研究表明,它们还能分辨出快乐与愤怒的面部表情,甚至表现出嫉妒。
 

狗是非常聪明的动物,可以感知人类的情绪。

It now seems that they can sense when a person is untrustworthy. Once a dog has decided a person is unreliable, it stops following the cues they give.

而最新实验显示,它们甚至可以判断出某人是否可信。一旦一只狗认为某人不可信,它就会停止追踪此人提供的线索。

It's been known for years that dogs understand what it means when a human points at something. If a dog's owner points to the location of a ball, stick or food, the dog will run and explore the location the person is pointing to.

众所周知,当有人指向某个东西时,狗便可理解背后的含义。如果一只狗的主人指向球、棍子或食物所在的地方,这只狗就会飞奔过去,查看主人指向的地方。

The latest research shows they are quick to figure out if these gestures are misleading.

最新研究表明,它们也能很快搞清楚人们的手势是否存在误导性。

In a study published in the journal Animal Cognition, a team led by Akiko Takaoka of Kyoto University in Japan presented 34 dogs with three rounds of pointing.

日本京都大学的Akiko Takaoka领导的团队在《动物认知》期刊上发表了一篇论文,阐述了34只狗在3轮指示实验中的反应。

In the first round, the experimenters accurately pointed to where food was hidden in a container. But in the second round, they pointed to an empty container.

在第一轮实验中,研究人员指向了一个里面藏有食物的容器。但在第二轮实验中,他们却指向了空容器。

In the third round, the same experimenter again pointed to the container with food.

在第三轮实验中,同一位研究人员再次指向了装有食物的容器。

But now the dog did not respond to the experimenter's cue. That suggests, says Takaoka, that the dogs could use their experience of the experimenter to assess whether they were a reliable guide.

但这一次,狗并没有对实验者提供的线索作出响应。Takaoka认为,这表明狗可以根据自己的经验评估研究人员是否给出了可靠的指示。

After these rounds a new experimenter replicated the first round. Once again, the dogs followed this new person with interest.

在3轮实验过后,一位新的研究人员重复了第一轮实验。这一次,狗又满怀兴趣地遵循了他给出的线索。

Takaoka says she was surprised that the dogs "devalued the reliability of a human" so quickly.

Takaoka表示,狗竟然能在这么短的时间内“降低对一个人的信任”,着实令她感到意外。

"Dogs have more sophisticated social intelligence than we thought. This social intelligence evolved selectively in their long life history with humans." 

“狗的社交智力远超我们的想象。这种社交智力是在与人类的长期相处中,有选择地进化出来的。”

The next step, she adds, will be to test closely related species such as wolves. This would then reveal the "profound effects of domestication" on the social intelligence of dogs.

她补充道,下一步是对狼等近亲物种展开测试。这可以揭示出驯养对狗的社交智力产生的“深远影响”。

The study highlights that dogs like things to be predictable, says John Bradshaw of the University of Bristol in the UK, who was not involved with the research.

英国布里斯托大学的约翰·布拉德肖(John Bradshaw)表示,这项研究表明,狗喜欢可以预测的东西。

As soon as events in their lives become irregular they will look for alternative things to do.

只要生活中某件事情变得没有规律,它们就会选择其他事情。

And if they consistently don't know what's going to happen next they can get stressed, aggressive or fearful, he adds. "Dogs whose owners are inconsistent to them often have behavioural disorders."

他还补充道,如果它们始终无法判断接下来的情况,就会感到紧张、好斗或恐惧。“如果狗主人反复无常,那么狗往往也会变得行为紊乱。”

This last part of the experiment can be explained by the fascination dogs have with anything new: "Dogs are almost information junkies", says Bradshaw, so a new experimenter is "trusted" once more.

这项实验的最后一部分可以用狗对各种新事物的热情来解释:“狗向来都是信息贩子。”布拉德肖说,所以它们认为新的研究人员是“可信的”。

The finding comes as no surprise to dog owner Victoria Standen. She owns a collie (pictured), which is considered to be among the most intelligent breeds.

在狗主人维多利亚·司坦登(Victoria Standen)看来,这项研究并不出人意料。她养了一只苏格兰牧羊犬,这是一种智商极高的狗。

When out for a walk, the collie will sit at the point of a junction and wait to see which way to go. "I've taken to pointing which direction and after she looks that way, she looks back to me to check it's okay to run off," says Standen.

出门散步时,她的狗会在十字路口坐下,等待主人选择方向。“我会指示一个方向,她会看看那个方向,然后回头看看我,确认是不是那个方向。”司坦登说。

What's more, if a stranger has proven to be unreliable (and not a food source) her dog is less likely to trust them.

另外,如果有陌生人的可信度被证伪,她的狗也不太可能信任此人。

It has become increasingly clear that dogs are more intelligent than was once believed, but their intelligence is very different to ours, says Bradshaw.

布拉德肖表示,越来越多的证据表明,狗比我们想象得更加聪明,但它们的智商与我们大不相同。

"Dogs are very sensitive to human behaviour but they have fewer preconceptions," he says. "They live in the present, they don't reflect back on the past in an abstract way, or plan for the future."

“狗对人类的行为非常敏感,但它们的偏见却少得多。”他说,“它们活在当下,不会以抽象的方式反映过去或规划未来。”

And when they encounter a situation, he adds, they will react to what's there "rather than thinking deeply about what that entails".

他补充道,当狗进入某个环境时,它们只会思考那里有什么,“不会深入思考可能出现的后果”。

Dogs then, are clearly not mindlessly listening to us when we gesture which this study provides more evidence for, says Brian Hare who is chief scientific officer at Dognition.

Dognition首席科学家布莱恩·黑尔(Brian Hare)表示,这项研究进一步证明,狗不会盲目听从我们的手势。

"They evaluate the information we give them based in part on how reliable it is in helping them accomplish their goals. Many family dogs, for instance, will ignore your gesture when you point incorrectly and use their memory to find a hidden treat,” adds Hare.

“它们会评估我们提供的信息,这一定程度上取决于我们的信息在帮助它们完成任务时有多么可靠。例如,家里的宠物狗往往会在你的指向错误时忽略这些线索,直接使用自己的记忆找到隐藏的东西。”黑尔补充道。
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