Everyone has at least one story from their teenage years about sneaking around behind their parents’ backs. Maybe it was slipping out of the house to go to a party, coming home past curfew, or just stealing cookies after bedtime. And maybe on a CRAZY night, it was all three.
As a pup parent, you may think you’re exempt from dealing with this typical teen behavior — but we’re sorry to inform you that this is not the case. Like, not at all.
Researchers at Hood College were also curious about dogs being sneaky, so they conducted research to observe their behavior. In the study, a group of dogs were given an inhibition task where they were presented with a plate of treats and told by researchers to “leave it.” The forbidden treats were then put into two separate containers: the first was a noisy container with a bell that jingled when treats were removed, while the second was a silent container that allowed treats to be taken without a sound.
Once the treats were in their respective containers, a researcher would sit and guard the treats in one of two positions. In the first position, the researcher would sit between the treats and look right at the dog. In the second position, the researcher would sit between the treats but have their head between their legs so they couldn’t see the dog.
As it turns out, humans are not the only who resort to sneaky behavior to get what they want. When the experimenter wasn’t watching, the dogs preferred to take the treats from the silent container, but when the experimenter was watching, the pooches chose the noisy and the silent containers evenly. Therefore, dogs preferred to take the silent container when they knew there was a chance they would be “caught” by the researcher.
So, if you needed further proof that our fur children are pretty much like real children, look no further than this study. Or, your own dog, who is probably in the kitchen right now doing this.
Seriously, you should probably go to the kitchen.
H/t to Scientific American