From Oxford dictionary:

  • drool: Drop saliva uncontrollably from the mouth.
  • slobber: Have saliva dripping copiously from the mouth.
  • dribble: Allow saliva to run from the mouth.
  • slaver: Let saliva run from the mouth.

They seem interchangeable to me, can anyone provide a context in which one of them is more suitable?

After looking up other references in internet:

https://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20130315194748AAQST3F http://forum.wordreference.com/threads/slaver-slobber-drool.2108951/

It drool looks like a term generally used to refer to human actions where saliva is spat uncontrollably (usually baby, during deep sleeping,...) or as an automatic reaction on sight or aroma of food, etc. And slobber is used more often refering to animals. Dribble and slaver seem to be less commonly used.

Can anyone clarify what context they should be used, and which one is more common?

Thank you.

1 Answer 1


Slaver is more commonly used for animals when then salivate at the site of food or when they are hungry for that matter or perspire.

Slobber is commonly used for babies who salivate without having any control over it just out of their nature and that is very normal.

Drool as you have rightly pointed out is used more commonly for human when they salivate at the sight of delicious food or are hungry.

Dribble is more or less a controllable salivary action which may or may not be influenced by food or hunger.

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