Disturbing Reasons Your Dog Licks You 

We Utahns love our dogs. We treat them like one of the family. In fact, most of us treat our puppies like they are human with the same kind of feelings, hopes and dreams as seen in a Disney movie. We assume our pets are just another one of us that just uses barking and tail wags to communicate. 

There isn’t any real harm in this, but there are those who study dog behavior as if they are animals and not humans. They use observation and logic to understand why a dog acts a certain way. If you don’t want their insight on why a dog licks you, stop reading now. 

Photo by Chris Slupski on Unsplash
Photo by Chris Slupski on Unsplash

When A Dog Licks Around the Mouth 

Observing the puppies of coyotes and wild dogs, researchers have found the pups will lick the parents face to try and get them to regurgitate food. Licking is a sign the dog wants to be fed. Part of the reason your dog is licking your face might be it is hoping you will barf up something yummy.  

You Don’t Use a Napkin 

The dog maybe smelling food on your face, or it may detect the taste on your skin from whatever you ate last. This is especially true if you recently ate ribs without a napkin. The dog sees you as a plate with sticky goodness left on it. 

Licks a Certain Part of your Body 

Dogs have been known to detect illnesses such as cancer cells, pregnancy and even low blood sugar. If your pet is fascinated with a certain location, you may want to get it checked out with a doctor. In this case the dog uses its sense of smell to detect problems. 

Sharing Saliva Can Give Space 

Sometimes a dog wants room. Slathering wetness gets some to move away. It doesn’t take long for an animal to realize that when it licks, it gets more space, and it will do it again and again.

They Get Hugs and Loving 

This is the reason we most want to believe. Dogs like rewards. If they lick the person and they laugh and pay attention to the pet, this will encourage the dog to do more of it. 

Photo by Wade Austin Ellis on Unsplash
Photo by Wade Austin Ellis on Unsplash

One last note. Dogs often lick places on themselves and other dogs that you would be horrified to put your lips on. Just keep it in mind when that French poodle lives up to its name.  

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