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Animal grooming behavior involves animals regularly cleaning themselves and putting their fur, feathers or other skin coverings in good order. This activity is known as personal grooming, a form of hygiene. Extracting foreign objects such as insects, leaves, dirt, twigs and parasites[1] , are all forms of grooming.

Among animals, birds spend considerable time preening their feathers. This is done to remove ectoparasites, keep them in good aerodynamic condition, and waterproof them. To do that, they use the preen oil secreted by the uropygial gland, the dust of down feathers, or other means such as dust-bathing or anting.

Felidae cats are well known for their extensive grooming. One reason advanced for such grooming is to remove all traces of blood and other matter so as to not alert prey with the scent. Cats groom so much that they often produce hairballs from the fur they ingest.

Grooming as a social activity Edit

Main article: Social grooming

Many social animals adapt preening and grooming behaviors for other social purposes such as bonding and social structure enforcement.


See alsoEdit

References & BibliographyEdit

  1. Graystock, Peter, Hughes, William O. H. (2011). Disease resistance in a weaver ant, Polyrhachis dives, and the role of antibiotic-producing glands. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology.

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Animal grooming behavior

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