Do you think that only humans laugh, and can be tickled to laugh? Well think again, because various animal researchers, and animal keepers have shown that many animals can laugh.
This applies not just to monkeys and apes, cats and dogs, but to rats and mice. The ability to laugh says many things about how similar we are to many animals.
Apes have a very human-like response to being tickled - they giggle, squirm and laugh, just like children and adults. But this response is not limited to primates.
In a 2009 study published in the journal, Current Biology, the researchers compared the sounds that juvenile great apes (orangutans, chimpanzees, gorillas and bonobos) made when they were tickled, with the laughter sounds made by human children when tickled. They found that the sounds were similar.
This article looks at the evidence to answer the question: "Can animals laugh just like us?" Also, what does this say about how animals think and whether they are conscious, just like us.
The study showed that there were many similarities in the sounds made by humans and animals, with the differences mirroring the evolutionary tree of the primates.
It suggested a common ancestor for apes and humans that giggled when tickled.
However other research has shown that many other animals are ticklish and giggle including rats and mice, cats and dogs.
Researchers discovered that rodents emitted high-pitched chirps when tickled which were outside hearing frequency range of human hearing.
The same noises were made by rats and mice.
A search of videos on Internet showed evidence of giggling when tickled in a wide range of animals including owls, dogs, cats, meerkats, penguins, and even a dolphin and a camel.
The researchers do not say that other animals laugh like humans, but they produce their own special vocalisations as expressions of joy when tickled.
However these sounds may help to understand how laughter evolved.
Konrad Lorenz, the famous ethnologist, also proposed that dogs are capable of producing a laughing sound which in dogs is a distinctive panting pattern.
In his book 'Man Meets Dog' Lorenz described how dogs respond when invited to play
Charles Darwin noticed that chimps and other apes emit laughter-like sounds when they are playing or when they are tickled.
The famous Jane Goodall described this as breathy panting or grunting. The laughter-like sounds of chimpanzee are much breathier.
Humans tends to chop their laughter breaths (or pants) into short "ha-ha" sounds.
Studies of the laughter sounds of dogs show that is a pant with a 'hhuh, hhuh", sound.
Laughter is infectious in dogs as it is in humans.
When a group of 15 puppies were played a recording of a dog laughing they romped and rolled around joyfully.
The research raises some interesting questions about what animals think and whether they are conscious.Source: CCO Public Domain Source: CCO Public Domain Source: CCO Public Domain Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain Source: Source: CCO Public Domain