When we are confronted by cute things, our brains produce dopamine, a joyful hormone. Although we can’t wander the globe to see what nature has to bring right now, we’ve compiled a list of the cutest animals on the planet to provide you with a dose of dopamine.
1. Red Panda, South and Central Asia
First place will always be the red panda! This colorful animal is well-known for its cute waddle, which is due to its short front legs. It is not, contrary to common opinion, a member of the panda tribe, but rather a relative of raccoons, skunks, and weasels.
It is listed as endangered because habitat loss, poaching, and inbreeding have reduced the population to less than 10,000 individuals. Help them by spreading their cute pictures!
2. Quokka, Western Australia
Since the quokka was dubbed “the happiest animal in the world” on the internet, many visitors have travelled to Australia to take selfies with this friendly marsupial. Despite its cheerful appearance, it is considered endangered due to habitat destruction and human activity.
3. Margay, Central and South America
Margay cat is a Central and South American cat who looks like an ocelot or a oncilla. The only cat that can spin its hind legs 180 degrees, allowing it to bolt head-first down trees like a squirrel, and can hang from branches with its back paws, this nocturnal cat has adapted to a life spent mostly in trees.
4. Fennec Fox, North Africa
The Fennec Fox has adapted to a life of extreme heat, sandy conditions, and little water. Its enormous ears, which are twice the size of its head, aid in hearing prey creeping around underground and dissipating heat during the day.
5. Japanese Weasel, Japan
A Japanese weasel native to the Japanese islands of Honsh, Kyushu, and Shikoku, kills small mice along rivers and, in the winter, under the snow. Over the winter, the weasel’s fur turns white, allowing it to blend in with the snow.
6. Sea Otter, Northern Pacific Ocean
Sea otters live in kelp forests along the Northern Pacific Ocean’s coasts, where they often lock hands to avoid floating apart. They float on their backs and use rocks to break open shellfish, making them one of the only animals that use tools.
7. Wombat, Australia
Wombats are nocturnal marsupials that are solitary and pudgy. They dwell in burrows and tunnels dug with their paws in Australia’s grasslands and eucalyptus forests. The most interesting facts about these furry animals are they poop in cube shaped!
8. Capybara, South America
The capybara is the largest rodent in the world and, similar to the beaver, it is a semi-aquatic mammal and a strong swimmer. When they are not swimming, they are sleeping even in water. Don’t be fool by their love for water, they’re also extremely agile on land.
9. Elephant Shrew, Africa
The elephant shrew derives its name from its long, trunk-like nose, which is usually just 20-30cm long. It is one of the fastest of all small mammals, and has been reported running at speeds of nearly 18 miles per hour. It is found in southern African countries and is also known as the sengi.
10. Japanese Dwarf Flying Squirrel, Japan
This squirrel can be seen flying across the peaks of alpine forests in Japan, despite the fact that it sounds made up. The nocturnal creature has a thin skin layer between its front and back legs that allows it to float effortlessly between treetops at night.
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