Are we the only animals that cry?

22nd October 2009
Are we the only animals that cry?

Asked by: Anon

We often talk about the cry of animals, like wolves or eagles, but I assume you mean shedding tears.

Lots of animals do this to clear debris from their eyes. But surprisingly, there’s no good evidence that any of them do this as a sign of unhappiness (our close relatives, chimps and gorillas, use vocal noises).

Even elephant ‘tears’, sometimes produced under stress, are quite different from ours: for example, they are not produced from a tear gland.