There's just something about a baby's chubby cheeks that gives us a violent urge to squeeze them. Always.

And now, science has explained why we have a constant need to poke, squeeze and even say 'we want to eat' things we find cute.

"We think it's about a high positive-affect, an approach orientation and almost a sense of lost control," said researcher Rebecca Dyer of Yale University in an interview with LiveScience.com. "You know, you can't stand it, you can't handle it, that kind of thing."

Being curious about the subject of 'cute aggression', — our urge to hurt all things cute — Dyer and her team asked volunteers to pop bubble wrap while watching a slideshow of cute, funny and neutral pictures. On average, people watching the cute slideshow popped 120 bubbles, compared to 80 for funny pictures and 100 for neutral ones.

But that doesn't quite explain why we get such strong emotions when it comes to adorableness. Other studies have shown our love of cute also has something to do with our desire to look at younger versions of things, or pedomorphism, as scientists term it. Evolutionary biologists, on the other hand, suggest things with big 'puppy dog' eyes and bobble-like heads look vulnerable, precious and needy, giving humans an urge to protect and take care of them — like we would with our own kids.

And while science has shown how our brain reacts to cute things, others suggest looking at cute Internet cats or baby pandas rolling around in the snow, makes our brains want to forget about things. For example, cat posters were used to get people's minds off the Vietnam War, according to CNN.com, and make the day go by easier.

Dyer adds that even though we want to squeeze all things cute, we actually don't want to intentionally hurt them. Instead, our positive emotions turn into negatives ones — like when kids squeeze babies or pets too hard, for example.

"It might be that how we deal with high positive-emotion is to sort of give it a negative pitch," Dyer said in an interview with LiveScience.com. "That sort of regulates, keeps us level and releases that energy."

Do you get hyperactive and giddy when you see a cute kid or animal? Let us know in the comments below:

Need more cute? Here are the cutest pets of 2012:

Loading Slideshow...
  • Molly's Kittens

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/BetsyNZ"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://i.huffpost.com/profiles/421014-tiny.png?20090425212317" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/BetsyNZ">BetsyNZ</a>:<br />Just for a few seconds the kittens all sat still and looked up at my hand

  • My pal Mooshi

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/RobOnMV"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/RobOnMV">RobOnMV</a>:<br />Moosh is an English bull dog, and this was taken a few months ago when he was about three months old. Lots of love for this guy - loves the camera!

  • Kris and Taya's bubbys

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/krisa223"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/krisa223">krisa223</a>:<br />

  • Bailey and Ray

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ashley_Weisman"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1326254671/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ashley_Weisman">Ashley Weisman</a>:<br />Snuggle Buddies

  • Bentley, my Seal Point Himalayan Kitten

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Charlene_Sherman"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1436115239/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Charlene_Sherman">Charlene Sherman</a>:<br />He's a love bug and very comical! :)

  • Cudaman

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/usrsman"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4270449.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/usrsman">usrsman</a>:<br />

  • You make the best pillow!

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Felicia_Allen"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/google_profile_img/1097748.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Felicia_Allen">Felicia Allen</a>:<br />Cholita and Zoey. Litter mates, BFFs, Compadres.

  • Ruby & Bentley

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kjshampine"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4270024.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kjshampine">kjshampine</a>:<br />Ruby & Bentley

  • Parolis Jenkins ♥

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ohaikiwi"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://i.huffpost.com/profiles/2642537-tiny.png?20121115141820" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ohaikiwi">Ohaikiwi</a>:<br />

  • Mr. Wally

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/hp_blogger_Mia Aquino"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/9338390/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/hp_blogger_Mia Aquino">HuffPost Blogger Mia Aquino</a>:<br />Wally is a Sulphur-Crested Cockatoo.

  • bruno

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/jchris7504"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/jchris7504">jchris7504</a>:<br />used to be my neighbor

  • Winston

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/KennyEee"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://i.huffpost.com/profiles/2001454-tiny.png?20110728101413" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/KennyEee">KennyEee</a>:<br />

  • Molly likes to smile :)

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kaligirlvalleygirl"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kaligirlvalleygirl">kaligirlvalleygirl</a>:<br />Molly likes to smile for her Daddy :)

  • Tucker

    -Rebecca Searles, HuffPost

  • Jackie's hair after playing with Daddy :)

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kaligirlvalleygirl"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kaligirlvalleygirl">kaligirlvalleygirl</a>:<br />Jackie is a Daddy's Boy.

  • Rylee

    Rylee, the sheepdog -Rebecca Searles, HuffPost

  • Billie Green (Black Lab)

    While not technically my dog (she belongs to my aunt and uncle), I have known Billie for many years. Intelligent yet strong-willed, Billie is very fond of her twice-daily dog-bone chewing sessions and presenting worthy visitors with her fake stuffed trout and other fish. Some say her tendency to ignore certain individuals and move about as she pleases makes her very cat-like, but her eager greetings for friends and longing stares when the smell of meat is in the air makes her 100% dog. -James Gerken, HuffPost

  • Anson Michael

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/calicoservices"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4269995.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/calicoservices">calicoservices</a>:<br />

  • MOBY

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/magnoliadrive"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4270025.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/magnoliadrive">magnoliadrive</a>:<br />World famous for cleverly putting 3 balls in his mouth (by himself) and for also being the worlds BEST frisbee catcher! We LOVE him.

  • My Useless Hound Dog

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/spforc"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/spforc">spforc</a>:<br />Bo Key Of Lake Mary Florida

  • Ryleigh

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Keel_Wilcox"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/google_profile_img/4270134.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Keel_Wilcox">Keel Wilcox</a>:<br />Ryleigh joined our family when she was around 6 months old. She was found as a puppy in upstate NY wandering near the highway. She had a rough, abusive life as a pup, but now loves to be cuddled, wear cute sweaters around Christmas time and play with all her toys!

  • Penny from the Block

    -Rebecca Searles, HuffPost

  • Lady GaGa's Christmas

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/rmurrayatlanta"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/1653572.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/rmurrayatlanta">rmurrayatlanta</a>:<br />Lady GaGa is her name, Chritmas is her game.

  • Starla of the Florida Keys

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Jed_Tenney"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1232133400/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Jed_Tenney">Jed Tenney</a>:<br />Super Dawg!

  • Maggie

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/karrn64"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/karrn64">karrn64</a>:<br />My beautiful girl...may she rest in peace.

  • SALLY

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/magnoliadrive"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4270025.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/magnoliadrive">magnoliadrive</a>:<br />A little girl who was rescued from an animal kill (un)shelter. She is the happiest little doggie to be around and loves life!

  • Zoey

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/usehernametoo"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/usehernametoo">usehernametoo</a>:<br />I'm not sharing!

  • Lucy

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Blaablaablaa"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Blaablaablaa">Blaablaablaa</a>:<br />Someone left this little bundle of love in a cardboard box at a bus shelter!

  • Valentino the Fashionista

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/elenav"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/elenav">elenav</a>:<br />Yes, I am wearing the latest sweater for good looking dog.

  • Otto

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Chandler_Barton"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/540412624/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Chandler_Barton">Chandler Barton</a>:<br />

  • Orlando de Umatilla

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/avena7"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/2966622.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/avena7">avena7</a>:<br />Catchin' some rays. Everybody loves the beard!!!!

  • Darla

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/hp_blogger_Joanna Zelman"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/contributors/joanna-zelman/headshot.jpg" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/hp_blogger_Joanna Zelman">HuffPost Blogger Joanna Zelman</a>:<br />We rescued our pitbull mix 3 years ago. She loves snuggling under blankets.

  • Cubby & Dylan at the Park

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Meg_Joseph"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1235378141/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Meg_Joseph">Meg Joseph</a>:<br />These are our "boyz", Dylan the Shih Tzu and Cubby, the Havanese. They love playing in the park, chasing stuffed animals around the house and snoozing together in the afternoon. They are best buddies and we think they are pretty cute.

  • Rookie

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/gillh52"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/gillh52">gillh52</a>:<br />

  • My Sophie

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/molly1231"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/molly1231">molly1231</a>:<br />"Whattaya mean I can't pull Santa's sleigh?"

  • Charlie

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Saint8312003"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Saint8312003">Saint8312003</a>:<br />Sleepy time- cozy in my kennel!

  • Tiki in her Thundercoat

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/dianelkd"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/dianelkd">dianelkd</a>:<br />Tiki in her Thundercoat during Hurricane Sandy

  • Jack

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Saint8312003"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Saint8312003">Saint8312003</a>:<br />Bone wasted!

  • Bandit

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/cgeer54"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1591136158/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/cgeer54">cgeer54</a>:<br />Who couldn't love me? I am a good boy and I love the USA.

  • Max Mastador

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/OhDark30"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://i.huffpost.com/profiles/2791077-tiny.png?20120729235739" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/OhDark30">OhDark30</a>:<br />Max is a two year old Mastador. We rescued he and his 4 siblings when they were puppies. We couldn't resist keeping him. He's just a big cuddly baby.

  • Hasbro

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/fields1313"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/fields1313">fields1313</a>:<br />I Love the snow!

  • Buster B

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/medico1926"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/medico1926">medico1926</a>:<br />He doesn't like to have his sleep interrupted!

  • Ruby and Bentley 2

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kjshampine"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4270024.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kjshampine">kjshampine</a>:<br />Ruby and Beantley 2

  • Polo Smizik

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Austin_Kurtz"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/100000745603515/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Austin_Kurtz">Austin Kurtz</a>:<br />Rescue Dog "Polo" Best Ever

  • Meeko smiling

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Kristen_Stoup-Commeans"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1140221604/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Kristen_Stoup-Commeans">Kristen Stoup-Commeans</a>:<br />...she smiles at everyone she meets!

  • Lily~The pampered pet

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/lamby"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/lamby">lamby</a>:<br />I just had a bath and may go to bed soon

  • Bentley Halloween 2012

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kjshampine"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://images.huffingtonpost.com/aol_profile_img/4270024.png" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/kjshampine">kjshampine</a>:<br />Bentley Halloween 2012

  • Maisy

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Jane_Burkholder_Rome"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Jane_Burkholder_Rome">Jane Burkholder Rome</a>:<br />Dressed up and nowhere to go

  • Porkchop is sleepy.

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Daniel_Gonzales"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/1403199439/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Daniel_Gonzales">Daniel Gonzales</a>:<br />This is Porkchop, our 5 year old tea cup Chihuahua with his friend.

  • Cutest Pets of 2012

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ashley_Heller"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://graph.facebook.com/607608099/picture?type=square" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Ashley_Heller">Ashley Heller</a>:<br />Our 11 month old boxer mix pup enjoys sleeping in our bed when were are not looking. Still not sure how he manages to wiggle under the blankets! but hey he looks mighty comfy.

  • Queen Chloe's first birthday

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/krisa223"><img style="float:left;padding-right:6px !important;" src="http://s.huffpost.com/images/profile/user_placeholder.gif" /></a><a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/krisa223">krisa223</a>:<br />

Also on HuffPost: