Lip Licking

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Lip Licking

This is a discussion on Lip Licking within the General Off Topic Discussion forums, part of the Life Beyond Horses category

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    07-17-2012, 11:30 PM
Lip Licking

When a horse licks his lips it means he's relaxed. *well one of the signs that he's relaxed*

But when a cat or dog licks his lips it means he's nervous?

Why is it different?
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    07-17-2012, 11:38 PM
Because cats and dogs are predators and horses are prey animals, so their minds are different but I'm not sure exactly why lip licking means relaxation.
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    07-17-2012, 11:54 PM
I have not found that lip licking always means nervousness in my dogs.
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    07-18-2012, 12:34 AM
A horse licking it lips means that it is processing what it just learned. You see that mostly when you teach your horse something new or ask it to do something that is not total routine for it. Never heard of it being assosiated with relaxation... Never saw my dog getting nervous when licking it lips either, she mostly does it when she had a drink or ate...
    07-18-2012, 12:58 AM
I don't assign absolutes to most human, bird, dog or cat behaviors. My mare licks me like a dog would, I'm sure other's horses do this too - all their own individual reasons.
    07-18-2012, 01:28 AM
Licking and chewing relaxes the jaw muscles of humans and horses. You cannot keep your jaw muscles tight while you lick and chew. Try it some time when you are nervous. It helps you calm down.
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    07-18-2012, 01:36 AM
Indeed, I take the signs of relaxing as this:

Licking lips
Blinking eyes
Lowering head and neck,
Cocking a hind leg,
Or sighing.
    07-18-2012, 01:40 AM
Green Broke
^^ Agreed. A nervous or tense horse will have tight or tense lips. A dog licking their lips can also mean they are anticipating food. .
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