The review by Murphy and Arkins (2007) is interesting and thorough. There are only a few points that need clarification. These concern imprint training and conditioned taste aversion.</P>1 <h5>Imprint training</h5> This technique was popularized by Robert Miller and is widely practiced. It is not true imprinting, because the foals so treated do not follow humans rather than their dam and they do not show sexual behavior toward them as adults. Habituation to tactile and a few auditory stimuli is probably the basis of any behavioral change. When performed on a foal that has not yet stood, it may be learned helplessness ( Maier and Seligman, 1976 ). Learned helplessness is the process whereby an animal, after having been placed in a situation where it cannot escape, will not try to escape in those situations where it could. If the foal is handled before it could stand, it could have that effect. One criticism of the technique is that it can interfere with the foal's attempts to find the udder. This can occur because if each stimulus must be applied until the foal stops reacting, the procedure can take hours. Slapping of the hooves seems to be particularly likely
Behavioural Processes – Elsevier
Published: Sep 1, 2007
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