Rats and humans have this funny thing in common

Researchers have found that our species and rats have something rather surprising in common.

We often tend to look at rodents as vermin or carriers of a possible plague, but we may be more like these tiny creatures than we think. In fact, research shows that the two species even have something in common.

Sensitive to tickling

There are not a lot of people who will willingly bring a rat into their home to bring up as one of their own, but the select number of those who have will know that rats love to be tickled. They love it so much that they rush to their owner’s hand to ask for more.

Researchers have been studying this strange phenomenon and have even filmed rats being tickled. It turns out that these rodents are particularly fond of being stroked on their stomachs or backs. However, a stroke on the tail didn't evoke the same reaction. What’s surprising is that it isn’t the love of being caressed in that fashion that they share with humans, but it’s something completely different.

Laughing rats

Turns out, that just like humans, rats laugh! That’s right. If you’re a rat owner and you haven’t heard this yet, don’t be alarmed. It cannot be heard by the human ear.

To detect this micro-sound, researchers placed microphones near the rats. They then noticed that these tiny creatures made small sounds when they got tickled and also in other positive situations.

Another similarity between us and rats is that they don’t laugh at everything. They too have their own mood. So, if a rat is stressed or just uninterested, they will probably not react in the same manner.

This article has been translated fromGentside FR.

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