Odor-aversion learning in neonatal rats

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Science  25 Nov 1977:
Vol. 198, Issue 4319, pp. 845-846
DOI: 10.1126/science.918668


Two-day-old rats were exposed to a novel odor and injected with an illness-inducing drug, lithium chloride. When tested at 8 days of age, these pups avoided pine shavings scented with the odor, whereas control pups did not. These results imply that rat pups are capable of associative learning at a much earlier age than was thought possible.