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Sanity Claws Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 06:42 PM
Original message
This idiot thinks cats are not very smart
Psychology lecturer Britta Osthaus says cats do not understand cause-and-effect connections between objects. She tested the thought processes of 15 of them by attaching fish and biscuit treats to one end of a piece of string, placing them under a plastic screen to make them unreachable and then seeing if the cats could work out that pulling on the other end of the string would pull the treat closer.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/jun/16/psycholog...

What rot! Cats like strings, with or without treats. This proves nothing.

P.S. Don't pass up the comments to the article.

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Ikonoklast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 06:48 PM
Response to Original message
1. If there was a string attached to the anchor of the battleship Iowa,
I can guarantee that my kitties would be dragging it and the anchor all over the house, no problem.
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Xipe Totec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 06:50 PM
Response to Original message
2. Britta Osthaus, outsmarted by cats
Oh, wait, I don't have to do anything? she will feed us after the experiment?


COOL!


I CAN HAS FOODS!

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Sanity Claws Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 06:52 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. I love your alternate title for the article!
Thanks for putting a different spin on it.
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csziggy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 06:59 PM
Response to Original message
4. So why did my cat as a kitten immediately figure out cause & effect?
We'd play with him with our standard cat toy, string on a stick. We've probably had 15-20 cats play with it and they all just chased after the moving part, whatever was tied to the end of the string.

My current cat, Tashi, immediately visually followed the string up to the stick, the stick down to my hand and attacked my hand. He never fell for the 'chase the moving part" game, not once.
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NV Whino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 08:57 PM
Response to Original message
5. That is hilarious!
I read all five pages of comments. My favorite was: I've known many psychologists and many cats. Cats are smarter.
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jeff30997 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 02:55 AM
Response to Reply #5
11. Lol
That's a good one. :rofl:
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KamaAina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 09:09 PM
Response to Original message
6. That study was funded by Big Dogma
:P
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JTG of the PRB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-16-09 09:11 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. +1
:thumbsup:
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emilyg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 01:56 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. +2
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RandomThoughts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 02:01 AM
Response to Original message
9. I have had this discussion before.
Some people think Dogs are smarter, they are just easier to train. A cat is so smart he often trains his human.

And I agree with the OP the test is flawed from the beginning, cats like playing with string also, Duh...
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Deep13 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #9
22. Which is smarter?
The one who is so needy it will do ANYTHING no matter how humiliating to please its owner.

The one who doesn't give a shit what the silly human thinks because it will get what it wants anyway.
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RandomThoughts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 11:31 AM
Response to Reply #22
23. Yea I sorta think independence requires more thought.
Or at least more self esteem and character. Not sure if it is intelligence, maybe wisdom.
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pdx_prog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 01:17 PM
Response to Reply #9
24. The smartest cat in the world....
will still shit in your house.

:rofl:


Like Red Forman said, "instead of getting a cat, why don't you just not flush the toilet anymore?"
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TimeChaser Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 02:25 AM
Response to Original message
10. One of my kitties figured out how to work a pull-string toy
She also likes to pull the emergency stop key on the treadmill when someone's using it. And she was the first to figure out that the little red dot came from the laser pointer in my hand.

That doesn't mean she never chases the laser pointer, though. Kitties have really strong predatory instinct, and when something triggers it, they attack. But it doesn't mean they're stupid. Hell, sometimes it's even hard for humans to overcome instinct.
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NV Whino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 08:48 AM
Response to Reply #10
14. Oh yes, laser pen
When my two were kittens I got a laser pointer. There is just something about that little red dot. But the real story is, Grayson not only figured out it came from the thing in my hand, he recognized the sound of the key chain attached to it as it would rattle when I picked it up. Then he recognized where I placed it and would go over and poke it himself to get me to pick it up and turn it on. I finally had to store it in a closed box so he couldn't even see it.
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nuxvomica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 06:26 AM
Response to Original message
12. The cats published their own study based on the same experiment
Their surprising findings:

Hoomans accept bad quantitative data over good anecdotal data.

Hoomans iz obsessed with strings too.



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grace0418 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 10:20 AM
Response to Reply #12
20. +5 LOL!
This chick has not met my cat. He's too smart for his own good.
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Deep13 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 10:24 AM
Response to Reply #12
21. The test was flawed as it fails to recognize what the cat wants. nt
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Orsino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 07:16 AM
Response to Original message
13. That's what they *want* this idiot to think.
While she's tabulating and analyzing the data, they're using her credit cards to order canned tuna.
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TZ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 08:56 AM
Response to Original message
15. LOL. I watched one of my cats figure out what causes shadows...
I was making shadow birds with my hands agaisnt the wall..my cat Sophie found it interesting..she pawed at it once and realized she could not get it..then she looked back at me..watched me wiggle my hands, looked back at the wall, looked at me again...and left! She realized it was nothing she could get! My kitty is smart! :)
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alarimer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 09:41 AM
Response to Original message
16. My cat knows wha a laser pointer does even before I push the button.
When I pick it up, he immediately gets excited. I am not sure this is the same thing, exactly, as in the article, but I think cats generally are very smart.

My cat does not like treats, though, so I am not sure how her experiment would have worked with him. I have bought all kinds of cat treats and he ignores all of them.
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SteppingRazor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 09:48 AM
Response to Original message
17. Sheesh, don't shoot the messenger.
It's not the scientist's fault that cats are morans.

:popcorn:
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 09:58 AM
Response to Original message
18. Mosby understood that when you pushed typewriter keys that little arms would come up. nt
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Deep13 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 10:07 AM
Response to Original message
19. In testing cat intelligence, one should never overlook...
...the cats-don't-give-a-shit-what-you-think factor. One can never rule out the effect of the cat's noncompliance with the terms of the test. If they want string, they'll grab string. Failure to play along with the test conditions should be taken as a soft, fluffy middle finger with retractable claw. That is if a cat could be bothered to flip anyone off.
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qnr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-17-09 01:20 PM
Response to Original message
25. On the other hand, how many cats are Psychology lecturers, yet still called idiots? n/t
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