Why do we find some animals cute, but not others?

Not all mammals (not tapirs, mice, rats), some birds (budgies, parrots) but not others (rooks, magpies), and no reptiles or insects. No-one can love microscopic animals, yet waterbears are cute-ish, especially the babies. See http://www.baertierchen.de/wbwb.html...
Answers:
Well, the ones we find cute are usually the ones who must be taken care by the parent for some period of time. Thus, nature has supplied them with "cuteness" so the parent or someone else will want to take care of them. Cuteness attributes are things like big eyes, head out of proportion with body (also big), short legs and arms, chubbiness, playful gestures, and clumsy movements (learning to walk or crawl). It makes us protective.

Now the animals most people think are not cute are animals that look like the adult counterparts, just smaller and they need little or no care from the parent. These would be things like snakes and other reptiles (although I find the squeaking from baby crocodiles cute), insects, arachnids,etc. Although I find amphibians can be an exception. I find little frogs kind of cute.
Why do we only find some people attractive and not others...why do we only find some children cute and not others...it's simply a case of personal taste isn't it!? Obviously some animals are meant to be cute, ie cats, dogs etc...and reptiles are less cute, but still have a huge fan base regardless.
Is't everything beautifull in its own way. such as a crocodile, its magnificent jaws/skin make it just perfect for its living conditions.
I have to disagree with your first sentence, mice and rats are very cute little animals.
It just comes down to personal taste.. I actually think Magpies are gorgeous and I have a lizard which I think is real cute but when some people see it they think its not so nice.
Its about evolution. We like to look after our babies to forward the human race, and so we find babies cute.

We tend to find animals cute that have similar charactaristics ie large eyes and a large head. Disney animators know this and whenever they have an animal to draw that has to look cute they give it a large head with large eyes.
It is just personal taste - there are degrees of cuteness as well - a labrador puppy is just THE cutest thing (Andrex!) but I find it very hard to find a shar-pei puppy cute - they are the wrinkly bald dogs if I've got it right...
personal taste. some people are attractive, some are not, why do we think things like this? PERSONAL TASTE, thats all it is.
There's another side to your question: why do some people find some animals cute (in this case ferrets), while others think they're disgusting.
A rabbit IS cute coz you can pet it.A tiger is NOT cute coz it will rip off your head and eat you all up..I hope that answers your question.
Actually it varies on the individual.I'm not sure about Tapirs but I have pet rats and they are cute.I also think my pet Leopard Gecko is cute and my Tarantula's and praying mantids.

Magpies are also beautiful birds.

It's a personal thing.
How about a dog, cat, or a hamster!
I personally find ALL animals beautiful in their own way - you mentioned tapirs, mice, rats, rooks, magpies, reptiles and insects are not cute, yet I find all of the above very cute and fascinating.


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