What Makes Dogs Lick You? How to Say No to Licking You

Dogs will lick someone to show you that they love you and give you kisses, but there are a few additional reasons why you can get a slobbery hand or face. Your dog may be licking you to get attention, to satisfy their untamed instincts, or simply to see how you taste. Although most dog owners view this frequent and mostly benign behavior as a sign of their dog's affection, occasionally, licking can be an indication that your dog is experiencing mental distress. Find out more about the causes of dog licking as well as what you may do to put an end to it.

What is the real reason dogs lick you?

Dog Licking

Dogs lick you mostly to express love, express needs, investigate their environment, and self-soothe. Although licking is a natural behavior that originates from instincts, it's wise to see a veterinarian if it becomes excessive.

1 - Affection

Dog Licking

Dogs use licking as a means of expressing their love, just as people might kiss or hug one another. This behavior dates back to when they were puppies, and their mother used to lick them to take care of them and express affection. Your dog may be attempting to give you the same amount of attention when they lick you.

2 - Smell

Dog Lick Hand

Unbelievably, dogs may enjoy the salted flavor of human skin. This can be brought on by the natural oils and perspiration that we all produce. Thus, your dog may lick you in part just because they enjoy the flavor!

3 - Instinct

Dog Licking

Dogs may lick you as a result of acting on their primal desires. The puppies lick the adults' mouths when wolves (and occasionally wild dogs) return to them after a meal. The puppies then devour the flesh that the wolves regurgitate after a hunt. Some people think that dogs occasionally lick themselves out of instinct because it's a behavior inherited from wolves.

4 - Interaction


Licking serves as one of the few ways dogs may communicate with us. They may lick to gain your attention or to demonstrate their submissiveness. Dogs may occasionally lick to show that they are hungry. This could be the case if you see that the dog licks more often right before or right after meals.

5 - Calling for attention

Dog Licking

Additionally, dogs will lick you to attract your attention. Usually, it begins as an expression of affection, but it quickly gains validation when someone laughs, smiles, or pets you. Perhaps your dog is lonely or bored. They demand your attention, and there you are. Any attention, even negative attention, will feel good to a dog who is looking for attention. You're still not avoiding the licking, even if you push them away, yell "no," or even give them a spanking. This can provoke even more licking.

The Issue with Dogs' Overindulgent Licking

Dog Licking Candy

Sometimes, excessive licking by your dog might be a sign of an issue. The following are some indicators that the licking may be problematic:

1: Licking a particular spot: If your dog licks the exact same area on their body every time, there can be a skin problem, pain, or discomfort there.

2: Increased frequency: Sudden increases in licking behavior may be an indication of health problems, stress, or worry.

3: Licking surfaces and objects: If the dog is licking surfaces, things, or the air a lot, there may be a neurological problem or digestive trouble going on.

4: Interrupting usual activities: It's important to pay notice if your dog's licking is interfering with eating, sleeping, or playing.

A more serious problem may be indicated if the dog's frequent licking is accompanied by changes in eating, behavior, or mood.

It's crucial to speak with a veterinarian in any of these situations. They can assist in determining the reason behind the frequent licking and offer suitable therapy.

How Do You Tell Your Dogs Not to Lick You?

Dog Licking Ice Cream

Refusing to give the dog attention as they lick you or others is usually the best way to get them to stop. When the unwelcome licking begins:

1: Stop petting or staring at your dog.
2: Move your head sideways.
3: If necessary, get to your feet and move on.
4: Give your dog attention, love, or even goodies right away so that the licking stops.
Eventually, your dog will typically understand that licking is not a desired behavior.

Additionally, you can be proactive and divert your dog's attention so they won't lick you. Thus, you proceed directly to: rather than giving them an opportunity to lick.

Playtime (exercise) with toys

Teaching your dog new tricks Talking of new tricks, you are able to teach your dog how to offer you some sugar if you truly don't mind the odd dog kiss.

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