The Root of the Behavior
Since yawning can be borne out of fatigue, it is safe to assume that our dogs making yawn-accompanying sounds when they are seeking extra cuddle time or affection from us. These sounds are rarely hard on the ears; they are just enough to alert us to the presence of our favorite canine friend who is looking for a little extra love. Yawning is also a sign of appeasement or even feeling stressed. At times, dogs will offer this behavior when they are feeling uncomfortable or are seeking our assistance with being removed from a situation that is distressing to them. Other times, dogs will yawn to convey that they mean no harm and are willing to submit to authority, be it canine or human. It is a simple means to communicate canine intent. It is interesting to note that appeasement yawning is not always accompanied by sound, though it certainly can be. There is no easily discernible reason behind why dogs would incorporate sound into this type of yawning though it could be deduced that sound might be added to intensify the emotion behind the yawn.
Encouraging the Behavior
Many studies have been conducted to try to ascertain more information about this interesting yawn chain reaction. The conclusions have been that our dogs do indeed respond to yawns with yawning of their own. The intensity of the yawning and its accompanying noises are reflective of the mood of the dog at the time of the yawn response. It could also be suggested that if our own yawn contained a melodious tune or two that Fido might be more predisposed to responding in kind. Noisy yawns are but one way our canine counterparts choose to communicate with us. Dogs also make use of barking, whining, howling, growling, shrieking, moaning, and groaning as ways to express their emotions and needs. These are important to consider as many of these sounds could be the very noise your dog is using to communicate with you when accompanied by a yawn.