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When dogs lick their owners

March 03, 2023 3 min read

When dogs lick their owners

Dogs are known for their loyalty, playfulness, and love for their human companions. They are often referred to as man's best friend for good reasons. One of the ways dogs show affection is by licking their owners. While it can be a pleasant experience for some, others may find it annoying or even gross. In this blog post, we'll explore why dogs lick their owners, what it means when a dog licks you, and how to handle it appropriately.


Dogs have been known to lick their owners for several reasons. One of the most common reasons is to show affection. They often lick their owners' faces or hands to demonstrate their love and devotion. Licking is also a way for dogs to bond with their owners and establish a connection.

Sometimes dogs may lick their owners to communicate. For example, if a dog is hungry, they may lick their owner's face to let them know that they need to be fed. Similarly, if a dog is feeling anxious or stressed, they may lick their owner to seek comfort and reassurance.

Finally, dogs may lick their owners out of habit or because they enjoy the taste of salt on human skin. This behavior is especially common among dogs that have not been trained to stop licking.

As mentioned earlier, dogs licking can be a sign of affection or a way for the dog to communicate their needs. However, it can also be a sign of dominance or submission. In some cases, a dog may lick their owner to assert their dominance over them. Conversely, a submissive dog may lick their owner as a way of showing respect and deference.

It's important to pay attention to the context in which your dog is licking you. If your dog is licking you excessively or in a way that makes you uncomfortable, it may be a sign of an underlying issue that needs to be addressed. For example, if your dog is licking a specific area of your body, it could be a sign of a medical issue or discomfort.

How to handle it appropriately?

If you enjoy your dog's licking and find it comforting, then there is no need to discourage the behavior. However, if your dog's licking is excessive or unwanted, there are several things you can do to handle it appropriately.

Firstly, you can train your dog to stop licking. You can do this by redirecting their attention when they start to lick and reward them when they stop. You can also discourage the behavior by teaching your dog a "no lick" command and enforcing it consistently.

Secondly, you can address the underlying issue that is causing your dog to lick excessively. For example, if your dog is licking a specific area of your body, you can have it examined by a veterinarian to rule out any medical issues.

In conclusion, there could be many reasons why dogs lick their owner. While it's generally a sign of affection and bonding, excessive or unwanted licking can be a sign of an underlying issue. By paying attention to the context and addressing the behavior appropriately, you can maintain a healthy and loving relationship with your furry best friend.

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