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Les chevaux sont particularly sensible aux voix d’enfants

A protocol for “cross-modal reconnaissance” was put into place in a test room specifically dedicated to the study of equine cognition at UEPAO. Many videos are projected simultaneously with chevaux: the one of a child’s visage and the other of an adult’s visage, as long as they diffuse a unique voice: soit celle d’un enfant, soit celle d ‘an adult. The objectif était to determine if the chevaux réussiraient à associer le visage de l’enfant avec la voix de l’enfant et le visage de l’adulte avec la voix de l’adulte. This device is based on the projection of videos to let it be used by this equipment to study the perception of human emotions by the horses [3-5]. Il permet à la fois d’observer les réactions spontanées des chevaux face aux visages et aux voix, mais aussi de savoir s’ils sont capable d’associer mentalement un visage et une voix de la même catégorie. Thank you for the cameras, the behavior of the horses and the notation of the time of regard to the chacun of the écrans to this observed and the heart rate that was recorded by a sensor.

The results showed that the chevaux are effectively capable of associating the traits of a youthful visage with the characteristics of a youthful voice, and the traits of an adult visage with the characteristics of an adult voice. As a result, it is evident that the videos are facing the video projects and not the people in real situations. In addition, the sensors ont révélé that the heart rate of the chevaux s’accelerait when they understand the children’s voice, more when they understand the voice of adults. Cela suggested a different emotional reaction in reaction to these two types of voix.

Cheval : behavior test
Illustrated representation of the behavior test – © Estel Blasi

Cette étude permis de montrer that les chevaux are font une présentation cross-modale des people en fonction de leur age, et qu’ils sont particularly sensible aux voix d’enfants. The research program is proposed in order to continue to understand the manner in which the chevaux perçoivent et traitent nos émotions: parmi les émotions que nous ressentons, quelles sont cells qu’ils peuvent percevoir, par quelles modalités (visages, voix mais aussi odeurs) et comment cela peut-il les influencer?

Plotine Jardat’s thesis is financed by the Institut Français du Cheval et de l’Équitation and by the ministère en charge de la Recherche.

[1] jardatP. & LansadeL. 2021 Cognition and the human–animal relationship: a review of the sociocognitive skills of domestic mammals toward humans. anime cogn. (doi:10.1007/s10071-021-01557-6).
[2] jardatP., RinghoferM., YamamotoS., GouyetC., degrandeR., outcastsC., ReignerF., CalandreauL. & LansadeL. 2022 Horses form cross-modal representations of adults and children. anime cogn. (doi:10.1007/s10071-022-01667-9).
[3] TroschM., CuzolF., outcastsC., CalandreauL., NowakR. & LansadeL. 2019 Horses Categorize Human Emotions Cross-Modally Based on Facial Expression and Non-Verbal Vocalizations. Animals 9, 862.
[4] TroschM., PellonS., CuzolF., outcastsC., NowakR., CalandreauL. & LansadeL. 2020 Horses feel emotions when they watch positive and negative horse–human interactions in a video and transpose what they saw to real life. anime cogn. (doi:10.1007/s10071-020-01369-0).
[5] jardatP., CalandreauL., Ferreira, V., GouyetC., outcastsC., ReignerF. & LansadeL. 2022 Pet-directed speech improves horses’ attention toward humans. science Rep 12, 4297. (doi:10.1038/s41598-022-08109-z)

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