Horses can communicate with people.
If confirmed as a real communication between species, horses will join a small group of animals that can communicate with people.
Norwegian scientists claim to have trained horses to communicate with people by making big shots show simple symbols on the board, the BBC reported.
The horses are ‘asked’ if they are to bear a ‘blanket’ or not, and their responses were consistent with the time what the weather is outside, suggesting that the horses did not show symbols randomly.
If confirmed as a real communication between species, they will join a small group of animals that can communicate with people through symbols, such as dolphins, pigeons and monkeys.
“I think our research shows that they can learn how to think,” she said Ceciliea Mejdell by the Norwegian Veterinary Institute, lead author.
“It is often considered that they are not very intelligent, but we have shown that by using the right methods they can really communicate and express their opinions,” said Mejdell.
Her team has trained 23 horses of different breeds to communicate encouraging them carrots. First, they learned that only approach the plate and touched it with his nose.
Later, they were trained to distinguish three symbols: a vertical line, which means that they want to cover themselves. Horizontal line, which means you want to be removed and a blank on the panel, which meant they did not want any change.
Once you are able to correlate each symbol with its meaning, they came up to the plate and muzzle indication as to whether they too cold or too hot. After two weeks of training, which is a day lasted 10 to 15 minutes, all 23 horses have learned the technique.
It turned out that the horses respond meaningfully, they wanted the covers when it’s been wet and cold, and demanded that they move when it was sunny.
This suggests that they used symbols for actual communication. But the researchers say, further research is needed to confirm the assumption.