Sexual motivation and arousal are two semi-independent processes that are fundamental to the performance of sexual behavior. In this study, male Wistar rats were used as an animal model to determine the effects of different doses of alcohol (0.75, 1.0 and 1.25 g/kg ethanol) on genital-grooming and nose-touching (two indices of sexual motivation), and non-contact penile erections (an index of sexual arousal). The moderate and high doses of alcohol had deleterious effects on both processes, while the low dose, in contrast, facilitated sexual activation. The results of this study confirm that sexual motivation and arousal are two semi-independent processes, and show that alcohol exerts differential effects on each one.

Keywords: alcohol, sexual behavior, animal models