Memory test shows that cats may be as smart as dogs

New research led by Kyoto University has found that "cats may be as intelligent as dogs, as opposed to the common view of people that dogs are much smarter."

For the study, scientists tested the animals' ability to recall a single event -- in this case, eating from a bowl of food.

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In an experiment, cats were allowed to explore four different containers, each of which contained food, and eat from two of them.

The animals were removed from the room for 15 minutes during which the containers were swapped out for empty ones.

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When the cats were brought back into the area, they tended to linger longer at the vessels that had previously held food they did not eat.

According to the study, "The results suggest that cats retrieved and utilized 'what' and 'where' information from an incidentally encoded memory from a single experience."

The researchers hope their work could help to improve the relationship between cats and humans.