Dogs are suckers for body contact. Some might find it enjoyable. But others might not like this licking thing. But for us owners, it’s really annoying at times.
Why does my dog lick my nose?
Your dog licks your nose for various possible reasons. The primary reason is their instinctive behavior. Also, it could be a submissive gesture or sign of affection and even boredom. The taste of your skin is also a reason. And remember the rewards that you give when they lick you.
We will examine different reasons for this nose licking. Also, we will head to see what to do about your dog’s excessive licking habits.
But first, let’s check 7 of the most likely reasons why dogs lick your nose.
7 Reasons Your Dog Lick Your Nose
It is not just your dog that licks your nose. All dogs do that. You might have also noticed that they do this with each other.
The licking habit of dogs is foreign behavior for us, the same as when dogs stare in space. But it is totally normal behavior for dogs.
Let us explore the 7 most likely reasons why dogs lick your nose:
Reason 1: Instinct Drives Licking Behavior
No one disagrees that like all other animals, dogs too are instinctive creatures. From day one the first thing they experience is licking from their mother. Their mother does it to help them breathe and clean them after the birth process.
Also licking and smelling is a way for dogs to get a better sense of things. This is how they gather information. First, they smell and then lick.
Furthermore, dogs can know about your mood through their nose and mouth receptors. So, yeah they may understand if you are sad or happy.
Reason 2: Your Dog Loves You
Licking is your dog’s way of showing affection. This represents his trust level for you and considers you as one of his own.
Dogs learn this functional behavior from their mothers and mates. This is how they strengthen their trust relations and family bonds.
You can also think of this licking as a kiss. When you adore it you kiss your dog in your way. Licking is a dog’s way of kissing you. Sometimes they also tend to lick your pillow.
Reason 3: Submissive Gesture
Dogs are pack animals and follow social order. And in this established social order licking is a way of accepting dominance.
By licking your dog is accepting you as his dominant pack leader. It is giving you respect. And consider you as his superior.
And being a pack leader you are responsible for their food and giving them love.
Reason 4: You are Rewarding Your Dog
When your dog licks your nose and you give it treats or toys. It learns it and tends to repeat it.
And they will continue to keep doing it to get more rewards.
Reason 5: He Thinks You Taste Good
Your skin has a salty taste. They may also smell food that you recently ate. And no doubt they love it.
For the same reason, they may also lick your mouth, cheeks, ears, and even eyes.
Reason 6: Attention
If you have ignored him or deprived him of your attention. And licking your nose is a way for them.
Besides attention seeking it could also be because of hunger or insecurity.
Reason 7: He Wants To Clean You
When puppies are born their mother licks them to clean them. This is how they learn this and do it with their other mates as well.
So, licking your nose might be your dog grooming you. He considers you of his pack and thinks he should help clean you.
3 Ways to Get Rid of Dog Licking Habit
To some dog licks may seem cute and adorable. But this seemingly harmless cuteness can soon turn to be an unpleasant slobbery habit. And if left unmanaged, this habit can turn into nipping and biting or even groaning.
There are bacteria in the dog’s saliva and mouth. Through the mucous membrane of your nose, these bacteria can find a way inside your body.
However, dogs’ saliva is no serious health threat to humans. Still, if a dog is being naughty with you. For general safety, you better stop it.
There are certain things that you can do to stop your dog from licking.
Don’t Reward Him When It Licks You
If your dog is encouraged because you reward him right after the nose licking. Then simply just stop rewarding him.
He will learn that you don’t like or approve of it. And then give him a reward when he doesn’t lick your nose. This will help a lot.
Train Him To Stop Licking Your Nose
Whenever your dog licks your nose. You need to train and teach him about not licking.
When it licks your nose, you should respond by standing and turning away from him. Leaving the room entirely would convey a strong disliking message.
Then you may come after some time and can respond with love. He would probably start licking again. And you will respond the same way which is to turn away from it.
And when you give him love and he doesn’t lick. That’s when you reward him with a treat or toy or food etc.
Make Something Else His Attention
If his licking habit is because he seeks attention. Provide him with something else so that he doesn’t require attention from you.
Arrange for his playing by giving him bones or toys. You can also teach your dog agility or maybe create an indoor obstacle game for him.
To ease you we have listed some of the best toys for your dog. Check them out:
Hopefully these will best keep him busy and distracted from licking your nose.
Also, your dog having these toys won’t feel boredom and won’t be needing any exercise.
Question: Can you get sickness from a dog lick?
Answer: Not very common but still there is a chance. If you are a healthy person, there is absolutely no need to worry. But if you are someone with a weak or problematic immune system, then you might get sick. Either way, you need to stop your dog.
Question: Should you allow a dog to hump any toy or pillow?
Answer: Humping itself is not bad and normal for dogs. So yes let it hump a toy or pillow but on a strict schedule. It is a healthy and acceptable thing. But don’t let them do it for the wrong reasons like aggression. Also If you see this becoming an uncontrollable habit, stop them through distractions.
Question: What would a dog put its paw on you?
Answer: When a dog puts its paw on you it means that he is expressing his feelings. And this feeling is surely very warm and sweet. He might be saying I love you or I trust you. Also, it can mean other feelings as well. These other feelings might be attention-seeking or hunger.
Now the question of why does my dog lick my nose will be crystal clear for you. And Whatever you feel about licking. With 2 ways we told you, you can always stop him.
Also, you may not need a professional. But still, professional help is always preferable.
Stay healthy, stay safe. That’s all.