Questions on Yawning + Rolling Eyes

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Questions on Yawning + Rolling Eyes

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  • Horses eyes rolling backwards
  • Picture of a horse face at a rodeo rolling eyes

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    09-29-2012, 12:56 AM
Questions on Yawning + Rolling Eyes


I have always been asking myself this question for a while now.

I have a 2 year old AQHA, who is EXTREMELY calm. She has the attitude of a 'been there done that' horse. She's always quiet, stands, sometimes she will almost fall asleep.

However she yawns a lot. I know some horses when under stress will yawn a lot. Kinda the same way with dogs. But my horse just doesn't show sign of stress, pain, etc.

She's always been the, I'd rather be asleep kind of horse. Even in the pasture. She doesn't even play, when the other horses want to she gets upset, kicks them in the face and walks away and go eat some grass. Even when the horse is literally up her butt trying to get her to play.

From what I have been told, horses don't yawn because they are tired, etc. They will yawn because stress, pain, etc. But I still don't see any of those signs.


When I put the bit in, for flexing on the ground (btw- I use a myler level 1 dee ring), she will yawn. I haven't seen any sores in her mouth and the vet said her teeth were fine. When I go to flex her from the ground she rolls her eyes to the back of her head. Doesn't gap the mouth, and gives to the pressure. But she will do it.

Any tips? Suggestions?

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    09-29-2012, 12:19 PM
Green Broke
I just always assumed they were bored. Mine yawn once in a while too. And they are just relaxed trail horses. No training or major stress that I am aware of.
    09-29-2012, 12:22 PM
Same as trailrider's horses, mine yawn when they are all relaxed & bored. Can't say I ever saw a stressed out horse yawned before.
    09-29-2012, 12:45 PM
I get my mare massaged regularly and I do techniques in between sessions. The yawn is always associated with being relaxed. I know she's feeling really good when she stretches her neck and yawns real big, then she'll usually release with a big breathy sigh/snort and drop her nose to the ground. Yawning for reasons other than that, I don't know, but I have heard it's a form of stretching they do for themselves.
    09-29-2012, 01:00 PM
Green Broke
I yawned when reading this LOL.. not to thrad jack.. but does that happen?? Like the need to yawn when hearing or reading.. seeing someone do it?
    09-29-2012, 04:14 PM
Actually, yawning CAN very well be a sign of intestinal problems, stress etc. Yawning is taking in extra oxygen and it's for a reason....boredom isn't one of them.
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    09-29-2012, 04:23 PM
Green Broke
Boredom = decrease in oxygen intake. Your respiratory rate is slower, therefore you're receiving less oxygen and why you yawn when you're bored to death in the class room.

The reason yawning is "contagious" is because our body sees someone else yawning and says "oh no, there's not much oxygen in here!" Subconciously our body goes into survival mode, and yawns to take in as much oxygen as possible. :)

My boys always yawn before dinner. I'll be braiding Gully's mane and my pony a bubba will be impatiently waiting, yawning right in my face.
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    09-29-2012, 04:35 PM
^it's a little different in horses...the reasons why they yawn.
    09-29-2012, 04:40 PM
Green Broke
Not saying they're exactly the same, just saying my boys yawn when they're bored/tired.
    09-29-2012, 04:53 PM
Originally Posted by Kayella    
Not saying they're exactly the same, just saying my boys yawn when they're bored/tired.
Because it's very often tied into what is going in the could be their stomachs's feeding time, I'm hungry!

Boredom brings on vices, such as weaving, cribbing, windsucking.

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