Have you ever seen an animal so cute that you just wanted to explode with happiness? Well, science has finally explained why you feel that way, and why it’s actually good for your mood.

Why We Squeeze Cute Animals

Photo by flickr user smlp.co.uk

Student researchers at Yale University have decided to name our strong desire to squeeze adorable things as “cute aggression” . They discovered that if we’re too happy, our body and our brain look for ways to get rid of that energy.

With all of that extra energy, the fastest way our bodies can get rid of it is by being aggressive. Not overly aggressive though, just a little more than usual. For example, instead of punching people after seeing a cute kitten, you might hug someone a little too hard.

Why We Squeeze Cute Animals2

Photo by Flickr User: Nicolas Suzor

During the research study, they found out that the cuter the picture was, the more aggressive the volunteers would be. The volunteers were told to pop bubbles after looking at a few pictures. Those who looked at cute pictures popped 40 more bubbles on average than the others.

There are two theories about why we have cute aggression. The first reason is that we feel a need to take care of the cute creature, so we become frustrated because we can’t. The second is that our brains need to balance out our happiness with a negativity, like crying while laughing.

In the end, most agree that cute aggression is not a big deal. So, continue to hug cute things, or learn to sprint if you’re just too cute.


  • happiness (n) – the state of feeling really good or positive
  • aggression (n) – being violent or using a lot of force
  • energy (n) – strength or power in the mind and body
  • bubbles (n) – a thin circle object filled with air that is easy to break
  • frustrated (adj) – feeling annoyed or unhappy about something

Story Credit: The Concordian

When was the last time you felt or displayed ‘cute aggression’?

Share your story in the comments. I’m sure they’ll all be fun to read.