Dogs like to lick things and this is especially true when they have a caring, tasty human in their company. In other words, you might have noticed that your dog really enjoys licking you.
In fact, you might even want to know how to stop a dog from licking.
In this article, we take a closer look at the issue but it’s also important to know why your dog might lick you in the first place.
Why Your Dog Enjoys Licking You So Much?
dogs are taught to communicate and show affection in this way since a young age.
After all, how often do you see a mother licking her pups? While “cleaning” is often the reason for licking these pups, this is also a way for the mother to acknowledge or satisfy the neediness of her pup.
For this reason, dogs are hardwired to lick the ones they love and this includes you. What’s more, dogs sometimes lick because they enjoy the taste of whatever oils or creams you might use on your skin. As if that’s not enough, licking is also a sign of excitement and content, while some studies suggest that licking is also a way for dogs to relieve stress.
Now, that’s not to say your dog is trying to help you feel more relaxed but rather to explain how licking releases endorphins that make your dog feel happier than usual.
..Anyway, the point is, your dogs likes to lick you.
But you might want to know how to stop a dog from licking?
How to Get Your Dog to Stop Licking You?
Okay, you might enjoy the odd lick here and there but things can get out of hand with some dogs.
Here are five simple ways that should help in terms of how to stop a dog from licking:
1. Make a Habit of Exercising on a Regular Basis
Is your dog licking you incessantly at the same time each day ?
And is this why you are wondering how to stop a dog from licking?
Quite often, dogs try to get your attention when they are hungry. But this also happens when they want to play or go for walkies. Sorry to ask but is your dog getting enough exercise?
Taking your dog for a walk is a great way to expend the energy that they might want to use on licking you. However, it’s a good idea to make this walk a regular thing and initiate the exercise before they start licking you. That is to say, if you take them for a walk every time they lick you, this defeats the purpose.
2. Ignore Your Beloved Dog (Yes You Can!)
Ignoring a dog, especially a young pup, is often the epitome of heartbreak. In other words, nobody likes to ignore their loving dog and deprive them of the attention their goodwill deserves.
However, ignoring any such behaviour is the best way to deter your dog from licking in the future.
It’s true, dogs also lick to get attention. With this in mind, you can discourage your dog by ignoring them in this kind of situation. Needless to say, acknowledging their behaviour will tell them that licking you is a good way to get attention which is the opposite of what you want to happen.
3. Distract Your Dog with a Kong (Bone or Other Toy)
As you know, dogs are easily distracted by bones or toys but preferably one that they will not want you to throw for them. For many dog owners, a ”Kong” is the perfect solution as they can usually keep your dog occupied for hours on end.
In case you might be asking yourself, a Kong is a small toy into which you can squeeze a little food and dogs need to squeeze and play with this toy to extract the food.
4. Use Treats to Encourage Your Dog to Stop Licking
While treats might seem like a bad idea, they can actually be used to stop a dog from licking. However, it’s important to provide this treat before they start licking as much as possible.
In the beginning, you can simply tell your dog “No” when they try to lick and they give them this treat when they comply. Over time, you can then provide this treat any time it looks like they might be about to start licking you. Ideally, this will help your dog to stop thinking about their urge to lick.
5. Replace the Need for Licking with Affection
You want your dog to feel loved and patting, grooming and even talking to your dog can do the trick.
But instead of ignoring your dog when it licks you, it’s often better to use some reverse psychology. For example, when your dog is not licking your, give them more attention than usual and this should prompt them to hold of on any urge to lick you. Best of all? Everyone wins with this one.
And that’s it – five tips for how to stop a dog from licking. At the same time, you should also keep in mind that dogs should not be punished for licking or any other submissive behaviour. Licking is their way of saying hello, saying sorry and saying “I love you”. Striking a balance is key and the odd lick here or there is not the end of the world!