Cuando las gallinas mean is a common Spanish idiomatic expression generally said to children when they speak when they are not supposed to. The full Spanish saying goes los niños hablan cuando las gallinas mean and literally translates to “children talk when hens piss.” For anyone that doesn’t know hens doen’t pee and this phrase is a scold for children to remain with the mouth shut. The equivalent of los niños hablan cuando las gallinas mean in English is “children should be seen and not heard.”
Despite the above illustration being included in the Puerto Rican Spanish slang dictionary Speaking Boricua, this saying is also shared by other Latin American countries.
What other phrases did your parents use to tell you to shut up?
Check out these other English Spanish articles.