Why Do Dogs Yawn?

Why Do Dogs Yawn?


You’ve probably seen your dog yawn countless times. It’s a universal and familiar sight, isn’t it? But have you ever stopped to wonder why your four-legged friend does this? Is it tiredness, boredom, or something else? Let’s dive into the doggy world of yawning.

1. Understanding Yawning in Dogs

Yawning in dogs, just like humans, can be a sign of tiredness or boredom. But for our canine companions, it’s often more than just that. Here are some possible reasons:

  • Stress: Just like humans, dogs yawn when they are stressed or anxious. It’s a way for them to calm down and decompress.
  • Communication: Dogs often use yawning as a calming signal, a way to communicate with other dogs or humans that they are not a threat.
  • Excitement: Sometimes, dogs yawn when they are excited. This may happen when you’re about to take them for a walk or they see their favorite toy.

2. Are All Dog Yawns the Same?

No two yawns are the same. Paying attention to the context and your dog’s body language can provide clues about what they’re trying to tell you.

Type of Yawn Possible Meaning
Yawn with a tongue curl Nervous or stressed
Yawn with a high-pitched sound Excited or eager
Yawn with eyes squinting Tired or sleepy

3. What to Do When Your Dog Yawns

If you notice your dog yawning excessively, it’s important to understand why. Is there something causing stress or anxiety? If so, try to eliminate the source. If the yawning is accompanied by other signs of discomfort or illness, it’s best to get them checked by a vet.

4. The Link Between Yawns and Empathy

Did you know that just like humans, dogs can “catch” yawns? It’s true! Research has shown that dogs are more likely to yawn after seeing a human do it. This is believed to be a sign of empathy, further proof of the deep bond between dogs and their human companions.

5. Conclusion

In conclusion, a dog’s yawn can mean much more than just tiredness. By understanding their behavior, you can better meet their needs and strengthen your bond. So, next time you see your dog yawn, you’ll know there’s more to it than meets the eye.


1. Is excessive yawning in dogs a cause for concern?

  • It can be. If it’s accompanied by other signs of distress or illness, consult your vet.

2. Can dogs yawn because they’re bored?

  • Yes, dogs can yawn out of boredom. Engage them in stimulating activities to keep them active.

3. Do dogs yawn to communicate?

  • Absolutely. Yawning can be a way for dogs to communicate with other dogs or humans.

4. What can I do if my dog is yawning because of stress?

  • Try to identify and remove the stressor. If it persists, consider consulting with a dog behaviorist.

5. Do all dogs yawn the same way?

  • No, dogs yawn differently depending on their feelings or needs. Pay attention to their body language for clues.