Reevaluating canine perspective-taking behavior

Monique A.R. Udell, Clive D.L. Wynne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Udell, Dorey, and Wynne (2011) demonstrated that both domesticated and nondomesticated canids-specifically, gray wolves-have the capacity to succeed on perspectivetaking tasks, suggesting that dogs' ability to respond to the human attentional state is not a by-product of domestication alone. Furthermore, not all dogs were successful on the task. Instead, the occluder type used was a strong predictor of performance, indicating the important role of environment and experience for tasks of this type. Here, we address several commentaries reflecting on the methods and design of that study, as well as the interpretation of the results. We also discuss the positive shift toward more interactive approaches in the field of canine behavior and cognition. Finally, we question the functionality of describing canine social behavior in terms of theory of mind.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)318-323
Number of pages6
JournalLearning and Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Canis lupus
  • Canis lupus familiaris
  • Dogs
  • Domestication
  • Learning
  • Perspective taking
  • Social cognition
  • Theory of mind
  • Two-stage hypothesis
  • Wolves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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