Researchers: Seeing photos of cute animals incites 'aggression'
A Yale graduate student is trying to find out why.
How many times have you said something like, “I want to eat you up!” when seeing an adorable puppy? An experiment by Rebecca Dyer, a graduate student in psychology at Yale University, and her colleagues found that seeing pictures of cute animals actually incites aggression in humans — more so than when they see funny or neutral animal photos.
The researchers don’t know the reason for this aggressive tendency, but Dryer said it’s possible that seeing the picture makes us frustrated that we can’t actually care for the animal in it, or that it’s a display of overwhelmingly positive emotion — like the way Miss America cries with happiness when she’s crowned.
"We think it's about high positive-affect, an approach orientation and almost a sense of lost control," researcher Dyer was quoted in a Live Science article. "You know, you can't stand it, you can't handle it, that kind of thing."
The results were presented at a meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in New Orleans.
— Read it at Live Science
More from Vetstreet:
Rare white penguin spotted in Antarctica
6 facts about penguins you don’t know
Photos: 10 cute pets wearing sweaters
Why does my dog… stare at me?
13 largest dog breeds: Towering and commanding
Photo: Gary S Chapman/Getty Images
pics, advice, info and stories for pet lovers
By Vetstreet Editors
It's Independence Day — and we're celebrating our freedom and everything American. Before you light up the grill or head out to catch the fireworks, take a moment to check out these fun photos of patriotic pups. We hope you have a wonderful holiday and, as always, remember to keep your pets safe.
You love him so much, but you put up with a lot for your pup.
There's no denying that cats are excellent companions, but sometimes they do something that leaves you scratching your head in total confusion. If you're used to dogs, cats' social interactions and the way they communicate can be very confusing. Yet it's these special behaviors, like affectionate head-butting and their penchant for cardboard boxes, that make us love them so much. To help you better understand your elusive feline, we rounded up 10 cat behaviors that people commonly consider mysterious. You'll find that many of these habits aren't weird at all for cats -- they're normal. Click through this slideshow to learn more about mysterious feline habits and what they mean.
Soldier the cat is now recovering thanks to a special oxygen mask used for reviving animals.
Donna the dog served in Afghanistan and is retiring.
Kitty can't hide its excitement when his owner walks through the door.
It’s an age-old discussion: Are you a cat person or a dog person?
Fire-rescue crews were able to lead the animal to safety.
For many, summer means getting outside and spending quality time with four-legged friends. Sometimes that's a game of fetch in the backyard, but sometimes it's fun in the sun (and sand) at the beach. Luckily, there are a number of beaches in the United States that let you bring your pooch — as long as you follow the rules, of course. Here are eight beaches that you can visit with your dog.
Factors include weather, walkability, yard sizes and more
Check out some of the sweetest cat naps we've ever seen...