It’s no secret that rats are intelligent creatures. They are known to be able to solve complex puzzles and even learn basic tasks, such as how to use a lever to get a treat. But did you know that rats are also capable of empathy? According to recent studies, rats can tell when you’re sad and will try to comfort you accordingly.
Can rats tell when you’re sad?
Although rats are not often thought of as emotional creatures, recent research suggests that they may be more attuned to our feelings than we realize.
In one study, rats were exposed to the scent of humans who had been either happy or sad.
The rats responded more strongly to the scent of the sad humans, indicating that they could discern the emotional state of the people involved.
Furthermore, when offered a choice between spending time with a happy human or a sad one, the rats overwhelmingly preferred the company of the happy individual.
These findings suggest that rats can empathize with our emotions and may even be drawn to those feeling down.
So next time you see a rat, it may be worth considering that it may just know how you’re feeling.
What Science says
In one study, scientists found that when rats were put into a cage with a toy rat, the free rats would try to release their fellow rat from its bonds.
The researchers believe that the rats were motivated by empathy, as they could relate to the feelings of distress and helplessness experienced by the captive rat.
Some fascinating facts
Even more fascinating is that when given a choice, rats prefer to spend time with other rats previously subjected to stress rather than those who have not.
This indicates that rats not only can empathize with others but also that they seek out opportunities to comfort those in need.
So next time you’re feeling down, maybe consider getting yourself a rat companion—you might find yourself with a furry friend who genuinely cares about your well-being.
Rats are often thought of as dirty, disease-ridden creatures—but it turns out they may also be some of the most compassionate beings on earth. So if you’re ever feeling down, remember that there may be a rat out there who would love nothing more than to offer you a helping paw.
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