Rats and Dogs – 1

This blog series looks at the basics of learned behaviours through a series of puzzles, designed to help you to consider how to understand and modify your approach in different situations.


For the first puzzle, let’s think about rats.

Rats are smart (and in my opinion, super-cute… see… https://www.pinterest.co.uk/rosej85p/dumbo-rat/).


So, let’s say I train a rat to press a lever to get a peanut. Rats love peanuts, so this won’t take long. Let’s say it takes 20 minutes.

Next, I’m going to place the whole peanut/lever apparatus in the cage for 10-15 minutes a day. Whenever the rat presses the lever, they get a peanut.

Now, I’m going to eat all the peanuts and continue the experiment. The apparatus is still there but no matter how often that lever is pressed, there will be no peanut reward.


Here is the puzzle. How long will it take the rat to stop pressing the lever? Make a note of your answer in hours, days or weeks.

We’ll talk about it more in the next blog.




















Blog by Isla…

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