Skip to content

Why Do Dogs Lick People

  • 7 min read

Dogs lick people, especially their owners occasionally. But when this habit occurs too frequently, however, it becomes very irritating.

Consider a scenario in which your dog starts to lick a visitor who has just arrived at your house, and after a while you still notice that he continues to lick your visitor’s body to the point where the visitor starts becoming uncomfortable and can no longer keep his or her cool but rather decides to leave your house to avoid the uncomfortable situation that your dog’s excessive licking causes.

At this point, you’re just as embarrassed as your guest. You probably now understand that your dogs obsession is a problem both for you and for the people around you.

Dogs naturally have the tendency to lick things they come in contact with and find suiting, but it becomes a problem when your dog begins to lick objects, surfaces, and people, even if you have fed them properly and given them the necessary vaccinations.

Some experts argue that dogs lick for a variety of reasons, which vary depending on the environment, the dog’s species, and the dog’s age. In addition, how you groom your dogs has an impact on their attitude.

During my vacation, I was responsible for a dog and was left alone in the compound after my inmates went on vacation.
The dog was a wonderful companion until a few days later, when it began licking surfaces and objects, including me and my mother!

I felt like I was under-feeding everyone because I didn’t have the resources to go the extra mile and get the rich, freshly cooked food that my neighbor was feeding everyone before he left.

I had to call him, and we came to an agreement that he would give me a refund if I had to go to town every other day and buy the kind of rich food he was used to.

After making it a habit for a few days, feeding with this kind of diet, which I imagined to be somehow richer and perhaps more nutritious than the meals I was eating with my mother, it became clear to me that general wasn’t interested in giving up his recent licking habit.

As a result, I decided to use force in general, if for no other reason than to stop him from over-licking. My mother was constantly complaining about how disgusting the licking habit had become in general. She had an aversion to dogs from the start.

General ate up a blouse that belonged to my mother one day. He stretched and dragged down the hanging blouse on a drying platform while licking around.

That was the day I called the owner, requesting that he either return to the house as soon as possible or authorize me to take whatever actions I deemed necessary to protect my interests from the general’s irritating habit.

I noticed that General continued to lick around despite my assurances that the diet I was feeding him was of the same high quality as the one given to him by the owner.

One thing became clear to me, I no know that general couldn’t just stop licking once he’d picked it up, as he began nosing around for food after I changed the diet the owner was feeding him.

Dogs lick people for a variety of reasons. It could be a result of habit, showing affection to an owner, obsession, and security measures, as a means of communication, to get a sense of human taste, instinct, and the desire to be rewarded by the owner.

Some of The Reasons Do Dogs Lick People

Taste of humans

The way humans taste is actually fascinating to pets. This is why dogs, especially if you are a pet-friendly person, like to get close to you and smell you.

Humans are perceived as salty by pets and dogs, and they find it fascinating to come close to you and experiment with that salty aroma.


Animals communicate with one another in a variety of unspoken ways. Animals and pets, for example, scratch to express emotions such as happiness, anger, hatred, or dissatisfaction.

Licking is another way for animals to communicate with one another. To show allegiance, love, and satisfaction, younger dogs lick their mothers and older dogs.


To show affection, dogs lick people, particularly their owners. When they receive nice treats from their owners, they may want to curl up next to you and lick you to express their gratitude and affection for your kindness.

When you scold someone, tell them to leave your dog alone, or tell them to stop abusing your dog, such a dog wants to show you affection by licking around you.

Seeking for attention

Some dogs, especially the younger ones, will lick you to indicate that they require your attention. It’s possible that the dog has begun to feel ignored by you for far longer than it would like.

So they approach you and lick you, perhaps to remind you that he is still present and would like to be noticed. This could be the case if you’ve been ignoring the dog while cuddling your child for a long time.

It could also be that the dog in question has become thirsty for a long time, or hungry, without getting your attention. In that case, the dog would just decide to lick around objects and things including you, until you give it the attention it deserves.


When their dogs lick them, some dog owners tend to cuddle them. This encourages dogs to lick more, to the point where it becomes a bad habit: your dog licking everything and everyone they come into contact with, becoming a nuisance and a source of concern for you.

When they are not restrained, they pollute everything they come into contact with simply by licking their tongues, because most people dislike animals and dogs who have licked their tongues, particularly dogs.

Even though licking from your dog can be a way to communicate your dog’s mood and needs, as well as a way to keep strangers out of your space, it can also be a very harmful phenomenon for dogs to constantly lick humans, objects, and surfaces.

According to Dr. Neilanjan Nandi, Assistant Professor of Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, “most animals mouths are host to an enormous oral microbiome of bacteria, viruses, and yeast.”

He adds that “a dog’s saliva contains proteins that may help cleanse or heal its own wounds,” but that humans should avoid dog licks due to organisms in dogs that can cause serious diseases.


Because dogs lick people for a variety of reasons, it’s important to pay attention and try to figure out why your dog feels the need to lick you before it becomes a problem.

This will allow your veterinarian to examine your dog for any health issues that may arise as a result of his or her behaviour.
Please keep in mind that this is just a suggestion. Feel free to do your own research and, most importantly, seek advice from pet nutritionists.