There’s nothing like coming home to a happy and excited dog – all the tail wagging, jumping and a lot of licking. Since pets can’t talk, every action they do means something. When a dog’s tail wags, it means he’s happy. When he’s chewing on something, it means he’s bored. When he licks you, it means that he’s showing affection – but he may also be trying to convey something else.
Here are 5 possible reasons why pet dogs lick humans:
1. To show affection
This is the most obvious reason – your pet is giving you a kiss and showing his love for you. It is said that canines release endorphins when they lick their owners, which in turn gives them a feeling of calmness and reassurance.
2 To communicate
As mentioned, every dog gesture has a corresponding meaning. Licking could be a sign that your pet is asking something from you – he may be hungry or thirsty, may want to play or he’s simply trying to get your attention. No one will know your furry friend as much as you, so it is best to observe and interpret what his most common gestures mean.
3. To show his loyalty
Your dog sees you as the leader of his pack and sometimes a lick is a gesture of his submission to you. It may be his way of letting you know that you have his loyalty, obedience, and respect. To him, you’re the boss. You can observe your pet do this to other members of the household which he also likes and respects, but not to other people and strangers who he doesn’t think are part of his pack.
4. To explore
Dogs are naturally curious beings. This goes way back to their ancestral genes wherein dogs in the past would use their noses and tongues to explore and navigate through the wild in order to survive. Today, licking you could be a gesture that your pet wants to get to know you better as they use their sense of taste to distinguish and recognize everything around them.
5. To taste you
Aside from knowing your appearance, your furry friend recognizes you best through your smell and taste. Our skin releases salts when we sweat and when our pets lick us, they will be able to use that as a marker for recognizing us in the future.
With all these reasons for a dog’s licking, know that every time your pet does it, it always has a positive reason behind it!
If you’re serious about helping your puppy in a kind and gentle way that will lead to an amazing relationship over time then click here to take a look.