Why dogs lick

One of the most frequent habits among dogs is licking. In most cases, people believe that dogs lick as a sign of affection. While this may be true, there are many other reasons why dogs lick. In fact, a dog can lick your hands, your face, your feet and even your legs. And each of these licks can mean different things.

Experts say that dogs lick because it is a natural instinct. In addition, studies have shown that when a dog licks, it releases endorphins. Remember that endorphins make dogs and people feel calmer and more relaxed. Following the release of endorphins, dopamines are released, which are also related to pleasure and motivation.

Dogs lick for many reasons

If you want to know why dogs lick people, there are many answers:

  • Out of affection
  • By communication
  • For cleaning
  • By exploration
  • For attention
  • For pleasure

When a dog is a puppy, it receives licks from its mother to clean and stimulate it. Moms lick their cubs to encourage them to urinate and defecate. Therefore, from their first hours of life, dogs learn that languages are used to interact and communicate with the world.

Still with puppies, it is a common behavior for them to lick each other to show affection. They can also comfort each other and other littermates through licks.

Another reason dogs lick is to improve their sense of smell. It is important to know that dogs, like humans, can recognize bitter, salty, sweet and sour tastes. However, they do not possess as many taste buds as humans. In this way, the sense of taste is used more when deciding what to lick or what to eat.

Body parts

Following the reasoning that dogs lick to improve their sense of smell, it is likely that they like to lick some areas of the body that have strong odors or flavors. For example, hands, face and feet.

Remember that your hands can pick up smells and tastes all the time. So when you get home, your pet canine is likely to be very intrigued by those tastes and smells you bring in your hands. And you will probably want to investigate them further with your tongue. Your hands can become a kind of roadmap through which your dog can sniff every single thing you’ve done during the day.

If your dog likes to lick your face, the causes may be similar. Your face is often constantly exposed to the outdoors and you probably touch it with your bare hands as well. That’s why your dog may like to lick your face. Of course, your face may also have traces of the food you eat and your dog will also find that attractive enough to try a few licks.

Image courtesy of https://pixabay.com, all rights reserved.