Life is tough, and it turns out that pigs are as aware of this fact as we are.
A new study by the University of Lincoln has found that pigs have the capability to both be optimistic and pessimistic about certain things – meaning that they are able to feel the sensation of positivity and have the ability to look on the bright side of life, as well as being able to feel down in the dumps about other things.
Researchers placed two bowls of food on opposite sides of a room – one was filled with sweets and the other was filled with coffee beans. 36 pigs were offered to eat out of the bowls.
Turns out that pigs don’t like coffee beans, but the optimistic pigs were willing to try out a third bowl which was later placed in the room. The pessimistic pigs didn’t even give the third bowl a second look – they’d already been let down by those pesky coffee beans and they saw no hope in trying out the new bowl.
Where the pigs lived also had an influence of whether they were optimistic or pessimistic – those that lived in smaller spaces with less straw turned out to be the negative thinkers, and the pigs that lived in bigger places with more straw, were much more positive. Makes sense, really. No one wants to live in a box room.
Seems we have a lot more in common with pigs than we realised.