Scientists often use mirrors to test animals' self-awareness, but most animals that see their reflection in a mirror don't realize what they're seeing is themselves.

When conducting a mirror test, a colored dot or other marking is made on an animal in a place it wouldn’t normally see, such as between the eyes.

The animal is then provided with a mirror, and if it realizes the dot is on its own face and tries to remove it, it illustrates that the creature is aware of its reflection.

Animals that don't make this connection often attempt to interact with their reflection, which you may have witnessed if you have a pet.

Animals that "pass" the mirror test — chimpanzees, dolphins and elephants, to name a few — typically rely on vision as their primary sense. Because cats and dogs don't rely on sight as heavily as smell, when they see their reflection, they often lose interest when the "other animal" doesn't have a scent.

We've rounded up 10 videos of animals — some self-aware and some not — that were surprised, startled or intrigued by their reflections. Check them out below.

Corgi puppy





Bearded dragon




Big cats

Related on MNN:

Laura Moss writes about a variety of topics with a focus on animals, science, language and culture. But she mostly writes about cats.

10 videos of animals reacting to their reflections
Most animals aren't self-aware, so when they see their reflections, they often react as if another creature has suddenly appeared.