Science Podcasts

Question of the Week episode

Mon, 1st Dec 2014

Can you catch a yawn from a cat?

Cat Yawning (c) johnc24

Why do we yawn? Is it because we're short on air? Matthew Boniface wanted to know this and whether he could catch a yawn from his cat. We spoke to Dr Hugh Matthews from Cambridge University to find out what makes them so contagious... 

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I don't know about cats, but it's been shown that dogs can catch yawns off people, and are more likely to catch them off their owners than strangers. Georgia, Mon, 24th Nov 2014

Its all about psychology, and there really is nothing physical about it.
when your catching a yawn its an emotional trigger..
Have you ever heard of the theory about emotional transference? 

1 Its the idea that the way you are feeling can be transferred to someone else....

Example # 1  the emotional roller coaster you go through when watching a movie isn't just the story itself but its the actors that bring out the core of the feeling they want you to go through.. If the actors were to just say their lines it wouldn't be as affective. they need to emote it

example # 2 when you go to a ball game or football you see other people around you yelling and cheering weather tis your team or not!This emotional transfer may cause people who normally wouldnt do that to start cheering themselves..

So yawning is basically a emotional trigger of being tired or bored... Because they are tired... you are being affected by that energy transfer
Oceanbliss, Tue, 16th Dec 2014

Cats can also catch yawns:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dsWcu_xU02Q wolfekeeper, Tue, 7th Jul 2015

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