Ever wonder what your dog is thinking when he slurps your face like a lollipop? Is he just saying hello—or planting the canine version of a kiss on your cheek? Although we may never know the real answer, it helps to understand the psychology of the lick. As any dog owner knows, dogs lick often and for a variety of reasons. For example, mothers lick their puppies to clean them and stimulate their urination and defecation.
Why Do Dogs Lick You?
Are Dog Licks Really Kisses? | PEDIGREE®
See if this sounds familiar: After going for a long walk with your dog and feeding her, you sit down to relax. She comes over, so you start petting her, but as soon as you do, the licking begins. This happens every single time you offer affection! Dogs lick their pack members and themselves for many reasons, and if you want to curb the behavior , it helps to understand its cause. Sometimes we have tiny food particles that they can taste, and beyond that, dogs enjoy the salt on our skin.
Why Do Dogs Like to Lick People?
Licking is an instinctive canine behavior that dogs use to communicate with people and other animals. When your dog licks your face, he could be trying to send you a message, gather information about you, keep you clean, or he may simply enjoy the pleasurable sensation of licking. Your dog loves you. Licking to show affection is a functional behavior that puppies learn from their mother and littermates.
At first glance, the act of a dog licking its owner appears only to suggest affection and familiarity. Maria Grazia Calore , veterinary surgeon, and expert in pet behaviour, explains. Slow and somewhat noisy licks characterise the special contact between a bitch and her young puppies. Demonstrating an intrinsic, primal, maternal instinct, they lick their puppies to stimulate urination and defecation and then lick them clean afterwards to eliminate odours that could attract predators. This partially digested food is an ideal diet for weaning.