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Do animals have tear glands?

  1. Jul 6, 2010 #1
    Do animals have tear glands? if so, do they secrete tear under emotional stress?

    Many thanks for your replies:smile:
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 6, 2010
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 6, 2010 #2
  4. Jul 6, 2010 #3
    Re: Crying !!!

    Humans are animals, first and foremost, and yes, many other animals lacrimate for a variety of reasons. You may have heard of crocodile tears, which are a real phenomena, but not from emotional stress. Vocalizations and body-language, chemical and chromatic signaling are the norm outside of the human end of things. it would seem likely to assume that tear ducts are very old for the sake of keeping the eyes lubricated, and clean, but that the emotional response is unique to humans.
  5. Feb 14, 2011 #4
    Re: Crying !!!

    Yes of course, Humans are Animals, I meant that Animals other than Humans...:smile:
    About the crocodile tears its kind of famous in many languages such as Persian : اشک تمساه, Its a Persian phrase which means a person who dose not cry because of emotion...!

    What about the Great Apes do they cry?

    Thanks in advance,
  6. Feb 15, 2011 #5
    Re: Crying !!!

    Yes, we have the same (probably borrowed) phrase in English. It's real you know? Crocodolians DO emit tears when their jaws open for a strike.. to protect their eyes. It's even more sinister when the biology is put into the mix!

    The great apes... I have no idea. They COULD, but my limited understanding of their behavior seems to indicate that their "crying" isn't like ours. Lacrimation as a means of communicating sorrow or distress seems to be more useful in the context of humans, who rely so heavily on facial expressions.

    HOWEVER, while shedding tears may not be the primary manner you can tell their grieving, they make very clear vocalizations of what seem to be sadness, grief, distress... what you'd expect really. It seems that humans took a pretty universal adaptation, tears, and made a very short move to emphasize that as a means of greater communication.

    Oh... and we don't have a ton of hair or fur, so tears tend to be VERY obvious.
  7. Feb 18, 2011 #6
    Re: Crying !!!

    I guess its quite hard to observe tears on those scaly skin of Crocodolians :biggrin:

    Thank you for your informative reply.
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