Do Leopard Geckos Yawn? Yes! They Do, Find Out Why

Leopard geckos yawning is one of the most adorable sights to see. But have you ever wondered why they yawn and why it is so common? It is natural for them to yawn if they are tired, but if it is happening too frequently, you might have to get them checked by a veterinarian.

Leopard geckos from time to time is pretty normal behavior. Yawning helps leopard geckos to clear their throats after eating. It also helps them to wake up and warm their body. If your pet is experiencing breathing difficulties, lethargy, or restlessness in addition to yawning, then you should visit a vet immediately.

This article will help you deduce when yawning can become a concern and how to take good care of your leopard gecko.

7 Reasons Why Leopard Geckos Yawn

Do Leopard Geckos Yawn

Yawning is a common behavior in Leopard Geckos just like staring is. There can be various reasons for leopard geckos to yawn. Yawning can be a way to deduce if your leopard gecko has some health concerns. Here are a few reasons why leopard geckos yawn.


Yawning can be a concern if your pet is doing it repeatedly. As this is a sign that they might have developed some digestive problems. Short-period yawns mean that your leopard gecko might have to regurgitate the insects you just fed them. 

Check their tank for any vomit, and keep an eye on their condition. If the leopard gecko has vomited, make sure they stay hydrated and do not fall ill. Provide them with extra water and electrolytes to balance out what they have lost through regurgitation.



Yawning might also occur if there is an obstruction in their throat. This obstruction generally happens due to feeder insects such as crickets, being caught in their throat. Leopard geckos can also cause an obstruction by swallowing something from their enclosure.

If something is stuck in their throat, it may cause difficulty in breathing. Yawning is their attempt to dislodge their throat and push things down to their stomach. You can help your pet by taking a drop of water and squeezing it down the throat. Doing so will help the gecko to swallow whatever is stuck and provide lubrication for the object.


If Leopard geckos are leaving their mouth open, it might also be a sign of aggression. This is a common trait that leopard geckos show if you are not lifting them properly. A yawn might be a way for them to communicate that they are uncomfortable or you are causing them stress.

Cold Temperature

If you have not put a heating lamp in your leopard gecko’s enclosure they might feel cold. Yawning helps leopard geckos to warm their body and protects them from the cold temperature. 

So, if your leopard gecko is yawning with a pumping motion of the skin, it might be because it is feeling cold in its enclosure. Make sure that you maintain an apt temperature of 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything below 90 degrees Fahrenheit will feel cold to your loving pet.

Waking up

Waking up

Yawning can also be a sign of them waking up. Leopard geckos tend to yawn first thing in the morning after waking up. It is nothing to be worried about and does not require any special attention.

Leopard geckos are nocturnal and might yawn as their day has just started. As the temperature inside the enclosure becomes cold, they will yawn gently and get started with their new day.

Respiratory Infection

Yawning or opening the mouth wide might also be an early sign of stomach infection. Respiratory infections can get serious very quickly and should be dealt with immediately.

Leopard geckos might be experiencing swelling or discomfort due to the infection. Yawning helps them get more oxygen through the mouth. It is natural for nostrils to get filled up with fluid or pus in cases of mouth rot or stomach infections. Prescribed medication from the vet might help deal with this quickly.

Difficulty in Shedding

Difficulty in Shedding

Leopard geckos shed once every month. Shedding is part of a natural cycle where their skin begins to look pale. Generally, the whole shed comes off in one go, but if they are facing a problem, they might yawn to get it off. Yawning helps them stretch their skin and to complete their shedding process quickly.

Do not remove the skin on your own, as it might do more damage to your leopard gecko. Shedding is a process that your pet needs to complete on its own. So no matter how tired or irritated your pet looks, just pay close attention and give them a lot more care.

When Should Yawning in Leopard Geckos Be Concerning?

When Should Yawning in Leopard Geckos Be Concerning?

As we have learned, Leopard geckos yawing is harmless and nothing to be concerned about. But a continuous yawn might be a red flag and something to pay close attention to. The very first possibility is that your leopard gecko is trying to clear its throat. Squeezing a few drops of water might help get rid of such problems.

Also, if the enclosure is too cold, it will force the leopard gecko to yawn to maintain body temperature. You should place a heating lamp and maintain a temperature of at least 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Yawning can also become a sign of distress if the leopard gecko has pathogens inside its stomach. These pathogens can cause stomach infections and must be dealt with immediately.

Difficulty in shedding is another factor that can cause leopard geckos to yawn frequently. If your leopard gecko is not being able to shed properly, it will yawn to loosen up the skin.


Do leopard geckos yawn when tired?

Yes, Leopard geckos do yawn when they are tired. They generally yawn when they are sleepy or after waking up from a nap. Leopard geckos might also yawn when they have something stuck in their throat. The duration and time of the yawn might point to different things and have to be dealt with accordingly.

Why is my leopard gecko opening his mouth?

Leopard geckos open their mouth to yawn or unclog their throat of any feeder insects. It might also be a distress call for stomach infections or cold temperatures. Consult the nearest vet if the duration of such yawns is too frequent.


Leopard geckos yawning is nothing to be concerned about. It is a natural process that occurs when your pet is tired or just waking up. If the intensities of these yawns get more frequent, there might be a problem. It might be due to stomach infections or them trying to unclog their throat. Keep a check on their daily behavior to take the right action accordingly.

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