Why Do Dogs Lick People, Objects, and Themselves

Licking releases pleasurable endorphins. Dogs lick people and other dogs as a social bonding and loving gesture.

Showing Affection

Dogs use licking to gather information just like humans use sight and hearing. It helps them understand their environment.

Exploring Senses

Dog saliva contains antibacterial properties. Licking keeps dogs clean and helps relive itches.


Licking and chewing behaviors can calm anxious or stressed dogs by releasing endorphins.

Soothes Anxiety  

Excessive licking of paws or genital area may signal an underlying health issue like allergies or infection.

Indicates Illness

Dogs may lick for stimulation when bored. Provide interactive toys and activities.

Boredom Relief

Obsessive licking to the point of sores or hair loss could indicate a psychological condition requiring treatment.

Compulsive Disorder  

Do Dogs and Cats Grieve When Losing a Companion