PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIt is argued by some that humans are set apart from all other species by their social abilities, most notably their ability to exhibit shared intentionality, which refers to the shared psychological states of two (or more) individuals working together toward a common goal, achieved through a joint effort and coordinated roles. By age 2, human toddlers outperform non-human primates on sociocognitive tasks, despite performing similarly on tasks involving physical reasoning. Previous studies have suggested that domestic dogs, Canis familiaris, could potentially have the ability to also exhibit shared intentionality with humans, as they have similar underlying social cognitive abilities (MacLean, Herrmann, Suchindran, & Hare, 2017). We tested 25 dogs in a newly developed canine shared intentionality test to examine if individual dogs would preferentially reengage a cooperating human over a non-cooperating human, when presented with an unsolvable task. We found no evidence in this study to indicate that dogs exhibit shared intentionality with humans by preferentially reengaging a cooperative human over a non-cooperative human in a triadic food acquisition task. Other recent studies, however, indicate that dogs will gaze at humans when presented with insoluble tasks, and outperform socialized wolves when following human cues (Miklosi, Kubinyi, Topal, Gascsi, Virani, Csanyi, 2003). Future studies are needed to determine if the similar underlying social cognitive structures between humans and domestic dogs allow for shared intentionality between the two species.
Degree ProgramHonors College