As charges of greed and self-interest fly in these hyper-partisan political times, humans might do well to look to rats for lessons in kindness and caring. A University of Chicago experiment to determine how much empathy rats have for each other had some surprising results, which are being published Friday in the research journal Science.
Not only did the rats help each other, but:
"We wanted to ask how much the free rat valued being able to liberate the caged rat," Mason said. "They like their chocolate chips, but the free rat would open both cages in no particular order. The free (rat) could have done all manner of things to monopolize the chocolate chips, but on average it always left one and a half chocolate chips for the liberated rat."
It left chocolate chips for the other rat!?