Rewards are often elusive and uncertain, requiring persistent effort to obtain. But how do we continue pursuing uncertain rewards, even when our expectations are not met? It is crucial to develop the ability to actively cope with the lack of expected rewards and adjust our behavior to maximize our chances of obtaining them. This skill not only leads to greater rewards but also helps us avoid depressive states or the pitfalls of addiction. In the realm of animal behavior, the inability to adaptively cope with negative outcomes in foraging and courtship behaviors can significantly impact species’ survival. In this study, operant tasks were developed to investigate the ability of rats to adaptively switch behavior to pursue a probabilistic reward after experiencing a lack of reward. By utilizing the nVista system, Seiya Ishino and her team recorded the activity of dopamine (DA) neurons in the lateral ventral tegmental area (VTA) and observed a subset of DA neurons, termed type 2 neurons, that exhibited increased responses to unexpected reward omission and decreased responses to unexpected reward. These type 2 responses were slower than the well-known type 1 (RPE) responses. The study suggests that type 2 DA neurons play a crucial role in actively processing the lack of reward and facilitating the adaptive pursuit of uncertain rewards. These findings expand our understanding of reward processing and offer insights into the neural mechanisms underlying psychiatric disorders such as addiction.