How Come My Dog Keeps Licking So Much?
Aside from a few barks and whines, dogs can’t verbally communicate how they’re feeling. Even with the barking and whining, it’s still hard to pinpoint and understand what it is they’re trying to tell us. If you’ve got a dog that’s constantly licking, you may be wondering why.
In certain circumstances where or what your dog is licking can give you somewhat of an idea as to whether or not something may be bothering them. So, for example, if your dog is licking between its toes, it’d make sense for you to check to see if there’s a splinter or something similar. If your dog happens to be constantly licking its tail, it may have fleas. Also, dogs will lick you upon your arrival as a form of greeting.
So, what does it mean if there's no obvious reason for your dog’s excessive licking?
Well, here are some causes of licking:
- Pain: Unfortunately, this will not always be obvious to see like a splinter or something. Your dog may have some sort of infection, inflammation, or arthritic pain.
- Nausea: When your stomach happens to be upset, sometimes, that bad taste in your mouth will trigger your glands to produce more saliva. The same could be said for dogs, which could explain all that licking.
- Not properly fed or hydrated: Hunger and cottonmouth could lead to persistent licking.
- Dental issues, hygiene or miscellaneous objects: If there happens to be any oral irritation in your dog’s mouth, that could result in licking.
- Neurological issues: Dogs don’t always have full body, obvious seizures. Their seizures can actually be very focused twitching. Sometimes when infected with a canine distemper virus, they can develop something called “chewing gum fits.”
- Cognitive dysfunction: Excessive licking in older dogs can be a sign of dementia.
- OCD (Obsessive compulsive disorder): It’s not very uncommon for a dog to begin excessively licking. The licking could be the results of a few different psychological reasons such as boredom, separation, stress and anxiety.
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