Why Do Dogs Lick Fabric

We are aware that dogs enjoy licking soft objects in the house, such as the carpet or the sofa, as well as their own paws, people, and peanut butter treats. They groom themselves, show their people affection, enjoy the flavor of our salty skin, or savor exquisite foods with their mouths. However, there can be more concerning factors if you observe that your dog is consistently and frequently licking the furniture. Does your dog lick things like the couch, your favorite chair, the pillows in your bed, and other things? The peanut butter-covered sofa suggests that it probably isn’t. A dog’s tendency to lick the furniture may be an indication of worry, stress, or even a medical ailment.

A bored dog might lick the furniture. He might simply be attempting to pass the time as there isn’t anything else to keep his mind and body active. Make sure he has toys, games, and treats to amuse himself with when you aren’t around if the behavior isn’t constant and if he can be quickly distracted from it.

A change in the dog’s environment or routine might cause anxiety and tension, which can lead to excessive licking. Is there a new resident in the house or a significant increase in activity, for instance? Dogs are creatures of habit, so changing their regular routine can worry them. Dogs use repetitive licking as a kind of self-soothing and endorphin release. Licking the couch is frequently a one-off reaction to stress, loneliness, or boredom. If left unchecked, it might develop into a habit, though.

Consider giving your dog additional opportunities for socializing, stimulation, and exercise. Increase your child’s playtime by bringing in new toys and hard puzzles, setting up playdates, or starting a new hobby like a dog sport. By the way, activity and exercise are well-known stress relievers that can benefit people. Even if the problem is not resolved, it is the most straightforward solution and has virtually no drawbacks.

Furniture Licking and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Some dogs actually exhibit true obsessive-compulsive behavior when they lick their furnishings excessively. Obsessive and/or compulsive behavior is displayed when your dog cannot be diverted from licking, licks intensely or aggressively, or appears to be almost dozing off. In people, it’s the difference between anxiously biting your nails and being unable to leave the house without making sure the door is secured seven times.

Canine OCD can affect any breed equally, however certain canines may be more prone to compulsive behaviors than others. This can be observed in dogs that have lived in extremely constrained, sterile conditions, such as being chained in a yard or housed without access to exercise or socialization. These canines might be exhibiting stereotypy, which is characterized as a single, recurring, non-functional habit, in this case, licking furniture. Moving to a kind, stimulating workplace could not even result in a change in the behavior because stereotypes can solidify into hard-to-break habits.

However, dogs raised in a reliable, caring, and healthy environment can also suffer from OCD. It’s possible that stimulation and diversion won’t help here. Discuss potential therapies, including as anti-anxiety medication and behavior modification therapy, with your veterinarian. You’ll eventually develop the ability to recognize triggers and foresee conduct.

The physical causes of excessive furniture licking are also possible. Due to their delicate digestive systems, dogs may exhibit symptoms of nausea or an upset stomach. Canine cognitive deterioration (dementia) in older dogs may cause compulsive licking.

So, Before Your Dog Licks the Sofa Threadbare, What Can You Do?

You have a decent probability of ending the habit if you can identify what’s driving it.

  • Assume that the cause is boredom, and provide him with an alternative kind of entertainment like a toy or game.
  • A new baby, visitors, loud noises outdoors, the doorbell ringing, or other stressors in his environment should all be kept in mind. Once you’ve identified the behavior’s origin, you might be able to either get rid of it or divert your dog’s attention with more suitable stimuli.
  • Think of ailments like dementia or digestive difficulties.
  • Speak with your veterinarian. She might suggest treatment for anxiety or obsessive compulsive disorder after ruling out any specific medical factors.

It’s not necessarily aberrant behavior if your dog occasionally licks the sofa and can be distracted from it. After all, dogs will lick a variety of objects to feel and learn about their surroundings. It’s also a typical method of coping with anxiousness. But when licking results in wet chair arms or sofa cushions and becomes so persistent as to border on obsession, it’s time to take action. You’ll prevent damage to your furniture and distress for your pet’s body or mind.

When dogs lick blankets, what does that mean?

Have you ever gotten into bed after a long day at work only to discover a moist spot on your mattress or blanket? Don’t panic just yet if you think your dog has been establishing territory all over your house. Simply put, your dog might be licking their covers.

Canines have an innate drive to lick. However, some dog owners find their dog’s persistent licking to be a little unsettling. Many pet owners are perplexed as to why their dog is engaging in such strange behavior.

Why do dogs lick blankets, then? Your dog may be licking the blankets for a number of reasons, including boredom, anxiety, dietary disorders, numerous medical conditions, mineral or vitamin shortages, or just habit. It is a good idea to take your dog to the vet if you are concerned that they are excessively licking their blankets.

Of course, dogs lick everything, including blankets. Only when they begin to lick something obsessively does licking turn into a problem. But there’s nothing to worry about. Find out why your dog enjoys licking your blanket by reading on. And the steps you can take to put a halt to your dog’s odd behavior.

How can you prevent a dog from licking your clothes?

It’s crucial to identify the cause of your dog’s licking of your couch, cushions, sofa, or bed in order to stop them from doing so or from biting other items and pieces of furniture around the house.

Your dog likes the taste

Many folks will eat while watching TV while lying on the couch. Crumbs, sauce splatters, or simple residual bits and pieces can frequently be left on your furniture as a result of this.

These are something that dogs will naturally seek out and consume, licking the tasty treats off of the fabric. As well as teaching your dog that food on the sofa is off-limits for consumption, you should make sure to thoroughly clean up any crumbs left behind from people eating off of the sofa to stop this from happening.

Your own body scents might also be a component in taste and smell relationships. You’ve probably seen that some people’s crotches appeal to dogs. Well, if you consider how much time you could have spent sitting on your couch and how those intriguing odors might have made their way into the sofa seat.

Your dog could be bored

Dogs use their jaws to engage with the world around them, as was already established, and tasting things goes hand in hand with that.

A bored or worried dog will frequently seek for stimulus to burn off their excess energy, which is frequently why they wind up chewing on or licking couches, your possessions, or other furniture.

Take your dog for long walks to help them burn off the excess energy they are trying to expend through their activities if you see that they are acting up, becoming more loud, or chewing or licking things around your home.

Giving them a new toy or a chewable toy (see which chew toys I recommend) can also help with this because it will keep them occupied and prevent them from damaging your interior furnishings. Additionally, there are several entertaining toys that I suggest because they were great for our Frenchie Claude.

Your dog could have a health issue

When dogs behave differently from how they usually do, it may be a clue that they are attempting to tell you that something is wrong. Dogs cannot vocally express their discomfort, tension, or pain; instead, they give us hints through their physical actions.

It is important to seek medical advice from a veterinarian if your dog ever exhibits unusual behavior or if you observe that behaviors like licking or nibbling have gotten worse over time without any apparent cause. Couch licking and chewing that appears out of nowhere may indicate a health problem.

Excessive couch licking can be a symptom of a variety of conditions, including dental pain, pituitary gland disorders, behavioral problems, and environmental worries. Spinning, chewing, sucking, biting, and even tail-chasing are compulsive habits that are frequently linked to anxiety concerns.

These are all typical dog activities, but they may start to affect your daily life and serve as a coping method. This is frequently regarded as a compulsion, and steps can be done to relieve it or teach them how to stop.

Your dog has a bad habit

Sometimes the problem is the result of a bad habit rather than anxiousness or compulsive behavior. Maybe they did it once and liked the feeling, so they kept doing it.

It is best to stop this as soon as you can because it may be a sign of rising anxiety and may even result in obsessive behaviors.

It is preferable to give them something else (like a new toy) to occupy themselves chewing or licking instead of just teaching them that it is not acceptable to lick the couch. Doing so can prevent them from having anything to unload their tension on.

Additionally, look for factors such as environmental changes or other potential stressors that may have caused them to start worrying excessively.

  • Why does my dog constantly lick my leather couch? An worried dog may find comfort in the texture of suede. The taste and fragrance of suede may prove to be enticing to your dog’s senses.
  • How come my microfiber couch gets licked by my dog? Microfiber has a highly pleasing texture, just like suede does. It might be brought on by a compulsive disorder, just like the rest of the advice offered here.

What draws dogs to blankets and sheets?

Licking is a behavior that dogs naturally engage in, but depending on where your dog is licking, the effect can range from barely perceptible to a significant annoyance.

Have you ever been about to climb into bed when you noticed that your linens were covered in a sizable puddle of thick, slimy dog saliva where your dog had been licking?

However, following such an incident, you must be wondering, “Why do dogs lick sheets?”

There are various innocuous reasons why dogs lick blankets. Your dog is drawn to your blankets because they smell like you. Tempting tastes like sweat salt or food crumbs may also be present on your linens. However, there’s a chance that conditions like anxiety, OCD, or even pica are at blame.

The majority of the time, the most common causes for your dog to lick your bedding are harmless ones, but this behavior may also be an indication of something more serious.

We’ll go over each of the most likely causes of your dog’s sheet-licking behavior since as a dog owner, you’ll need to know which you’re dealing with. We’ll also go over some ways you may assist stop it.

Why is my dog licking everything all of a sudden?

For dogs, licking is a normal behavior. As the puppies move around in their litter with their siblings, the mother dogs lick the puppies to groom them. Their wolf predecessors would also lick one another to ask the pack’s alpha members whether they may join in on a feast. The 14 reasons stated below are just a few of the many justifications for licking.

Something is itchy

Dogs frequently lick sensitive skin to relieve the itch, which may be brought on by allergies, flea bites, or other common skin conditions. Dogs who drag their rear on the carpet and lick the base of their tails may have an anal gland issue.

Something is ouchie

Dogs lick their inflamed skin, which can be brought on by an injury, an allergic reaction, or an issue with the skin. It can also help with the discomfort associated with illnesses like arthritis. Unfortunately, excessive licking can aggravate existing irritation and cause problems like infections.


Dogs use their tongues for a quick bath even though they lack the magical grooming abilities of our feline pals. Some dogs overgroom themselves, which can lead to skin irritation and bald patches. Anxiety, frustration, boredom, or medical conditions may all contribute to obsessive grooming.


Your dog may simply be attempting to communicate that they are hungry if they are licking the empty food bowl or smacking their lips. I need food now! Some dogs may lick enthusiastically when they anticipate a meal.


Dehydrated or thirsty dogs may lick to soothe a dry tongue, mouth, or throat. The salivary glands may be stimulated by that licking, but even better, it can alert their pet parent to the issue so they can have a cool drink!

Mouth Problems

Dogs may be enticed to lick a region in their jaws that feels odd, such as a chipped tooth or a gum injury. Dogs with gingivitis or dental problems may lick in an effort to relieve their discomfort. Regular tooth brushing and making an appointment for an annual cleaning at your veterinarian’s office can help you prevent these problems.

An ASPCA Pet Health Insurance plan with enhanced preventative care coverage may cover an annual dental cleaning.


Your dog’s lips may wet and they may have a bad taste in their mouth if they have an upset stomach brought on by an illness or by ingesting something bad. A dog may lick in an effort to expel some of the surplus saliva or remove the unpleasant taste.

Cognitive issues

In senior dogs, excessive licking may be a symptom of a cognitive issue. Other signs include becoming withdrawn, sleeping more than usual, and pacing the home. Ask your veterinarian if there are any drugs or treatments that might be able to help if you think your dog is having cognitive problems.

Stress or boredom

Due to a change in habit, separation anxiety, or the addition of a new pet to the family, some dogs lick because they are bored or anxious. If you think your dog is acting out because they are bored, try spending extra time with them and leaving them a puzzle toy that is filled with treats to keep them occupied while you are away. In order to manage anxiety concerns, which can be more challenging, you might want to consult your veterinarian or a licensed animal behaviorist.


Like eating, licking is another technique for dogs to explore their environment. This is especially true for young puppies who, like human babies, use their lips to investigate the world.

Attention seeking

Do you lavish praise on your dog when it licks you? So it makes sense why your dog enjoys licking! They now know that licking results in favorable attention. You’ll need to retrain your dog if excessive licking is becoming a problem. Keep your face away from the tongue when your dog tries to lick you, and refrain from rewarding them until they are calm. To avoid your dog becoming confused, make sure everyone in your home is on board with the new “no face licking policy.


When our puppies play rough with other dogs or people as they become older, they are taught not to bite. Instead of biting their opponent, some dogs may start licking them.

An expression of love

Those licks may be your dog’s attempt to show you how much she loves you. And let’s face it, a flood of wet kisses may truly make the day happier. Licking is another way for animals to express respect and let you know that they look up to you as the pack leader.