Because most people have such a negative image of rats, when I came across an article on the website of Healthy Pets written by Dr. Becker, I thought it would be great to share it with you and hopefully, change that negative image. The article was about rats and whether or not they laugh.
According to a famous neuroscientist, they do.
Jack Panksepp, a researcher at Washington State University, has been studying rats for years. Recently, through the use of highly sensitive equipment that can detect high frequency rat sounds, he picked up lots of chirping noises. These noises were most perceptible when the rats were playing with one another. The same chirping sounds were produced when the dopamine circuits in the rats' brains were stimulated. Dr. Panksepp thought these chirping sounds could very well be laughter and decided to tickle the rats and see what happened. The same chirping sounds were produced in dramatic fashion when the rats were tickled. As a result, Dr. Panksepp concluded that not only do rats laugh but the tickling interaction created affection for the human hands that made them giggle. How cute is that!