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Do Animals Enjoy Sex Just Like Humans?

June 15, 2014, 10:28 PM

What's the Latest?

Recent observational evidence is helping to resolve the age-old debate over whether animals experience the same pleasurable feelings that humans do during sex. In an article published this year in Zoo Biologyresearchers presented evidence culled from 116 hours of behavioural observations that two bears living in a sanctuary in Croatia had performed 28 acts of oral sex on each other. The researchers claim the behavior is a "result of early deprivation of suckling behaviour, since both bears were brought to the sanctuary as orphans, before they were fully weaned from their absentee mothers." And because the behavior was pleasurable, it continued.

What's the Big Idea?

Biologists have long taken the view that animals copulate primarily to procreate but in cases where the frequency of sexual activity extends beyond what is required by nature, scientists speculate that the pleasure principle is at work. The female lion, for example, may engage in up to 100 mating sessions per day during the week of her ovulation. Other research into the habits of Japanese macaques has found that increases in heart rate and vaginal spasms may indicate a female orgasm. Interestingly, the frequency of the alleged orgasms increase during copulation with males who occupy higher status in the macaque society. 

Read more at BBC Future

Photo credit: sunsinger/Shutterstock


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