The scientists also found that even though feline and canine mouths structurally are similar, their approaches to drinking are as different as -- cats and dogs.

Dogs and cats are biting animals and neither have full cheeks. But without cheeks, they cannot create suction to drink -- as people, horses, and elephants do. Instead they use their tongues to quickly raise water upward through a process involving inertia.

Both animals move their tongues too quickly to completely observe by the naked eye. But dogs accelerate their tongues at a much faster rate than cats, plunging them into the water and curling them downward toward their lower jaws, not their noses.

They quickly retract their tongues and a column of water forms and rises into their mouths, but they also curl the underside of their tongues to bring a tiny ladle of water upward.

The findings appeared in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


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