25 Adorable Photos Of Yawning Animals

Posted by , Updated on November 3, 2022

For many of us, animals are just amazing and cute creatures, no matter what species they are or what they do. But there is one thing that can make them even more adorable – yawning! Yep, you might have noticed this reflex in you dog or cat but in fact, most of animal species yawn. In animals, yawning doesn’t always have to be associated with tiredness or sleepiness but it can also serve as a warning signal. Baboons, for example, sometimes yawn to display their long scary canines to threaten their enemies. No matter if they yawn because of being sleepy or to intimidate possible predators, these 25 yawning animals are irresistibly cute. Btw, yawning has been proven to be contagious so can you go through the whole list without yawning yourself?


This sleepy hedgehog baby is just a few days old but in fact, hedgehogs are quite long-lived animals. Larger species can live up to seven years in the wild and even more in captivity. The oldest specimens have been recorded to live up to 16 years.

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Apart from yawning, ferrets can mimic human behavior in a few more ways. It is a little known fact but you can teach your ferret to blow his nose into a cloth handkerchief. That actually comes quite naturally because they "wash” their faces with scent from glands that are below and behind their ears by holding their hands over their nostrils and blow, sometimes sneezing, to dislodge some scent, then they will rub their hands behind their ears and forward over their faces.

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When yawning, lions proudly show off their large and sharp canine teeth but in fact, they usually kill their prey by strangulation. The prey also may be killed by the lion enclosing the animal's mouth and nostrils in its jaws. An average kill made by a male lion may weight around 400 kg (880 lb).

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With pelicans, it may be difficult to determine when the bird is really yawning and when it is just drying out its pouch. They use the pouch as a scoop net for catching small fish. The pouch can hold up to three gallons of water, which is up to three times the amount of what the bird´s stomach can hold.

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While hippos may not be the most cutely-looking animals when yawning, they can definitely open their mouth the widest. Studies have proven that a hippo can stretch his mouth open as wide as an incredible 150 degrees which may be enough to fit a 4-foot tall child in. But trying that would be a really bad idea because hippos are famous for their extremely powerful jaws and ill-tempered sometimes even aggressive approach towards humans.

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Snakes can also open their mouths wide but in this case, trying to figure out if they are yawning or getting ready for an attack is even less recommended than checking out the hippo´ s yawn. Even this adorable spiny bush viper baby can deliver a very painful bite. Without access to proper first aid and anti-venom treatment, their bite can be fatal.

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Most dog lovers would agree that every puppy looks sweet and yawning usually makes them look even more adorable, no matter what breed they are. It is hard to believe that this tiny sweetheart Rottweiler puppy will be a powerful and fearless dog weighing some 60 kilograms (130 pounds) one day.

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The koala is known for its relaxed and lazy life style so it is not surprising to see them yawning. In fact, they get so little nutrition from their diet that they must limit their energy use and sleep 20 hours a day. That means they only spend 4 hours a day in active movement.

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Pictures of chilling fur seals are also popular but don’t let them fool you. Despite their clumsy appearance, fur seals can be very nimble and fast animals. Strong front flippers give them extra mobility on land and an adult fur seal can move extremely fast across the beach if it has to. Not to mention their great swimming skills.

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This sleepy ostrich would also outrun you easily. The Ostrich is the largest living bird species with the fastest land speed of any bird. Their extremely long and powerful legs allow them to run at up to 70 kilometers per hour (43 mph).

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The yawning arctic fox cub looks lonely but it certainly has some brothers and sisters. Depending on food availability, arctic fox females usually have 5 – 10 young but in areas where food is abundant, they can have as many as 25 off-springs, which is the most of all wild living mammals.

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Turtles often open their mouth wide to intimidate potential enemies but the narrowed eyes suggest this red-eared slider is really yawning. Originally native only to the southern United States and northern Mexico, this turtle has become an invasive species in many other parts of the world as a result of pet releases.

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For baboons, yawning is a great opportunity to display their impressive sharp canines. Their diet is mostly herbivorous but generally, baboons are omnivorous animals so their powerful jaws can come handy when preying on fish, hares, birds, other monkeys or even small antelopes that they occasionally also eat.

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The mouth of this monitor lizard seems harmless but most of the 77 currently known monitor species are carnivorous, eating eggs, smaller reptiles, fish and birds. Monitor lizards are very intelligent animals, and some species have even been able to count .

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Apparently, squirrels know it is polite to cover their mouth when yawning. These lively rodents are usually very small weighing just a few tens of grams, but the largest squirrel - the Alpine marmot, can be up to 73 centimeters (29 in) long and weigh up to 8 kilograms (18 lb).

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Polar bears loves sleeping and relaxing but they do have a good reason for that – despite living in the coldest regions on Earth, their insulation and thermoregulation systems are so efficient that they sometimes have to avoid strenuous physical activities not to get overheated.

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The new born otter baby yawning looks so adorable. Otters are very playful and intelligent animals that often appear to engage in various behaviors for sheer enjoyment, such as watersliding. They may also find and play with small stones.

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The mouth of this yawning baby orangutan seems almost toothless but adult orangutans have 32 permanent teeth (the same amount as humans) including sharp canines that the males use for threat display and fighting. They don’t need them for eating because up to 90% of their diet consists of fruit.

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Owls are mostly nocturnal birds so they probably yawn a lot during the day. Owls have forward-facing eyes that give them binocular vision, just like humans, but since they cannot turn their eyes, they rotate their heads instead. They can turn their heads up to an incredible 270 degrees.

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Similarly to domestic cats, tigers spend a great part of their time sleeping or resting. Every day, an average tiger spends as much as 20 hours just lying, which is why seeing a yawning tiger is actually a very common thing. Despite being a feared predator, their hunt successfulness is usually only about 7% so they cannot afford to waste their energy.

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There are several different reasons why horses yawn. The most common is the same like with people – drowsiness, but horses also often yawn when stretching after a long rest or when something caused a sudden fright and then things get back to normal again.

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If there is an animal particularly known for its laziness, it is a sloth. In several languages, sloth even has the word “lazy” included in its official name. Sloths were considered one of the most somnolent animals in the world, believed to sleep up to 18 hours a day but recent studies have shown that their “sleepy” reputation is undeserved. The studies indicate that sloths sleep less than 10 hours daily, which is considerably less than in many other animals in this list.

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Every cat owner knows that resting, yawning and stretching account for a significant part of the cat´s daily routine. Cats yawn for the same reasons like we do except for yawning out of boredom so don’t take it personally if your cat yawns while in your presence.

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Yes, even fish can yawn! It might be difficult to recognize that but scientists figured out fish yawn when suffering from a lack of oxygen or excessive heat. In fact, there is even a fish species called the yawning fish (officially Poromitra oscitans) - a fish of the family Melamphaidae, found in tropical and subtropical waters of the Indo-Pacific region.

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The mouse is primarily a nocturnal animal which can be rarely seen during the day and if you do see one, it is usually moving so fast you can hardly recognize what species it was. Therefore, watching a mouse yawning is something you will probably never experience but this picture proves that these tiny rodents indeed yawn.

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SEE ALSO: 25 Insane Optical Illusions That Will Leave You Dazed And Confused »


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