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Why do dogs lick humans

Why do dogs lick humans

Dogs may lick humans for variety of reasons. It’s part of their behavior, which existed since a long time. Right from the birth wherein the mother dog licks her puppies to give them motherly touch and to clean them, licking is in fact the first interaction of dogs with the real world.

Canines cannot communicate verbally like humans so licking is one of their prominent communication mechanisms apart from wagging their tails or barking for that matter. One primary reason for dogs licking humans is to show submission, to display that your pet dog has accepted you as “leader of the pack”. This kind of licking nature is inherited and is present in dogs by birth since when dogs stay in groups, the lower members of the pack lick the powerful ones to show them their solidarity and make them realize that they are more powerful.

One more prominent reason for dogs licking humans is to show their affection and love. When a dog just gets bored or needs your attention to play or needs food then it may just come and start licking you. In such cases, you need to understand the gesture and reciprocate with the dog’s desire. Sometimes the reason is that the human skin is salty and dogs like to lick your skin due to the salty taste.

Apart from above mentioned reasons, there is one more important point that requires your attention. If the dog is suffering from some illness or getting anxious due to some reason then it may come and start licking you. In such cases, the licking is intense and you need to understand that your pet needs a vet visit. Although in most of the cases, your dog licking you is pretty safe but you need to remain cautious and make sure that your dog is not suffering from any disease since in that case you may also catch the infection.


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Editor-in-Chief and lead author at WhyDo