Through the Looking Glass: If you place a mirror in front of your dog, it will probably react to the reflection, investigate the “other dog,” bark at it, or even look behind the mirror to find it. Many animals will react to their reflection in a mirror, but few will recognize themselves in the reflection.

Until 2006, scientists believed that only humans, great apes, and bottlenose dolphins possessed enough intelligence and self-awareness to pass the “mirror recognition test.” This year, scientists added another mammal to the gifted list: the Asian Elephant


Scientists have observed self awareness in intelligent animals with complex social systems. While elephants are very distantly related to humans and apes, they have evolved similar social skills, including the ability to cooperate, experience empathy, and solve conflicts without violence.

Who knew that looking at a reflection in a mirror could reveal intelligence and depth?

All materials on this page by Julia Steiman