December 11, 2021

What that yawn REALLY means

What that yawn REALLY means
Dr. Chris Brown

At this time of year, we might be yawning every few minutes. But for the furry ones, it often has nothing to do with them being tired. Seriously.

So here’s the fascinating reason why pets yawn…

A hectic social schedule, late nights and long car trips will surely bring on the yawns. But interestingly, they’re not for the reason you probably expect. You see, for dogs AND cats, the yawn is actually a really interesting insight into their mind at that very moment.

The yawn means internal conflict. In fact, it’s almost a place-holder to buy them a few seconds before they work out what to do next. It’s why you’ll see it in moments where they’re experiencing something confronting, confusing and often anxiety inducing. So some classic ‘yawn moments’ are during fireworks, when someone new arrives at the house they don’t know or even when you’re getting ready to leave the house and they’re not sure if they’re coming with you. So think more anxiety rather than exhaustion when you see the yawn at these times.

But rather than patting them to appease their anxiety (which may end up re-enforcing it), think more about redirecting them onto something that distracts them away from that stress. Like a toy or a ball. Pre-loading them with some exercise and some calming treats (containing L-theanine like Drool Calm + Collected) well before that stressful time lands will also help.

Calm + Collected
Calm + Collected

Oh and and yes, dogs and cats can still yawn when they’re tired. It’s usually a much quicker yawn without the other stressful body language…

So essentially, yawns are even more eye opening than mouth opening. Who knew…

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