The aim of this paper was to develop a protocol to study the interpretation of ambiguous stimuli in cats as a measure of welfare. Ten cats were trained to discriminate between a rewarded position (R) and an unrewarded one (U), as measured by the approach latency for each position. After discrimination, they were exposed to three ambiguous unrewarded positions (R-near, R/U-equidistant, U-near) distributed at intermediate points between R and U. Approach latency increased as increasing the distance from the rewarded position: latencies to approach R and R-near were significantly shorter than for R/U-equidistant, U-near and U. This protocol should be further studied to assess its effectiveness in highlighting differences according to the welfare level of individual cats. © 2011 Universities Federation for Animal Welfare.
|Publication status||Published - 1 May 2011|
- Animal welfare
- Cat cognition
- Cognitive bias
- Interpretation of ambiguous stimuli
- Spatial location