2011 年 61 巻 2 号 p. 141-153
Horses (Equus caballus) have lived with humans for over 5500 years. Despite this, their cognitive abilities have not received much research attention compared with those of dogs (Canis familiaris), probably because horses are not as familiar to humans as dogs and have been considered to be difficult to test. Recent studies, however, have revealed their sophisticated social cognitive abilities with regard to both conspecifics and humans. In this paper we first describe fundamental characteristics of horse perception and horse sociality. Then, we review horses' learning and cognitive abilities, especially social cognitive abilities shown among conspecifics and in the horse-human relationship. Several studies have provided evidence that horses possess sensitivity to human-given cues and attentional states. Future studies should investigate ontogeny of horses' cognition and the influence of effects including training history and the exposure to humans, and possibly test how such cognition is supported by genetics.