Why Dogs Lick Your Fingers


To keep their pups clean, mother dogs will lick them. A dog will behave in this way their entire lives. After using the restroom, dogs may groom themselves or lick their behinds. The most you can hope for is that your dog decides to kiss your face before their behind rather than the other way around! An issue to be aware of is excessive licking. This can be a sign of some undiagnosed health issues. For instance, licking your dog’s paws momentarily relieves the intense itching he experiences when suffering from an allergic response. If your dog keeps licking his rump, it’s likely that he is irritated or that his anal glands need to be expressed.


Dogs may lick you to express themselves. A dog may lick calmly when being affectionate, but under other circumstances they may lick more frantically. Your dog may lick more frantically to express how they feel if they are scared, nervous, or thrilled. When you return home from a hard day at work, your dog’s licking may seem a little out of control. Your dog initially only licks you because he’s delighted to see you, but then something else begins to happen. All of this excitement and joyful licking causes your dog’s body to release a massive amount of feel-good hormones. Your dog gets a natural high from licking, which encourages him to lick more.

When they are licking you, observe their body language. Your dog will exhibit a wagging tail and frenetic licking when they are really happy or thrilled. Perhaps you simply asked them if they would want to walk. You should try to identify the source of your dog’s stress and try to reduce or remove it if they are crying, tucking their tail, or displaying other signs of distress.


Licking can be a compulsion in certain dogs who have obsessive tendencies. There’s more to this than just your dog licking people’s hands. They can be licking their empty plate, a location on their bodies, a piece of furniture or a wall. To rule out any potential medical causes of compulsion in this situation, you may wish to speak with a veterinarian. A trainer or behavioral specialist may be better equipped to assist you in changing your dog’s behavior and managing compulsions if the dog receives a clean bill of health from the veterinarian.


A symbol of affection is licking. Because they adore you, your dog might lick your hands and face. Your dog may like licking because it releases endorphins. Some experts also assert that licking is a symbol of submission in addition to affection. It may imply that your dog regards you as the dominant member of the household or pack.

Dogs frequently display submission when they lick another dog’s muzzle or the mouth of a human. It’s your dog’s way of telling you that you’re the top dog in this place. A small “Got anything to eat?” can also be said. When puppies in the wild rely on their mothers to share some of the new meat in her mouth, this instinct appears to have existed since the earliest stages of the evolution of dogs.

ailments or allergies

Itching and compulsive skin licking in your dog could be symptoms of allergies or skin conditions. To find out what’s wrong, you should take them to the veterinarian for a checkup. I’m hoping it’s as easy as some lotion or relaxing baths. Medication or dietary changes may be used as additional allergy treatments. The use of a fresh food diet for your dog, such as Ollie’s, that is prepared with vitamins and minerals like omega-3 fatty acids can help to relieve and prevent common skin problems.

The licking should stop if you work with your dog’s veterinarian to treat any skin or allergy issues. Some dogs may eventually develop a habit out of it, making it more obsessive. After the medical problems are under control, you can address any compulsions or behavioral disorders.

When your dog licks your fingers, what does that mean?

Your dog often demonstrates their genuine regard for you by affectionately licking your hands, which is generally interpreted as instinctual good behavior.

However, it’s not always a fun experience for dog owners, especially if you have to put up with this behavior a lot more than usual.

The key is to keep in mind that this is not a cause for concern; the solution rests in understanding what they require of you and teaching your dog a straightforward substitute in dog talk that they will pick up after a few licks.

If you’re smothered by kisses after a few hours away, you can teach your dog the straightforward command of “sit” and “stay” to calm him down. This is crucial to remember, especially with bigger hounds.

Is it okay for your dog to lick your hand?

Even if it is a little slobbery, your dog’s best “I love you” gesture is to lick your hand. A dog that is content and healthy will want to lick your hands and give you kisses in his special way. Licking is a technique to communicate and express love. Your dog licks your hands and gives you a tender gaze as a way of telling you that he believes in you. Your dog will be waiting to give you a warm greeting when you arrive even after a long day at work. Since your dog understands that excellent treats may be found in your hands, there may also be a hint of begging. He will be able to tell whether you have a reward to share and what has to be done to receive it by sniffing and licking your hands. If it is a slow, calm, soft lick, your dog will enjoy it and find it comforting. Frantic licking does not promote relaxation and might convey a different message. Take note of the frenetic licking that you see going on around you since it does not reflect a peaceful disposition. Simply having separation anxiety or being anxiously responsive to other sights and sounds could be the message. An animal behaviorist can analyze the dog in the stressful situation if you are unsure of what this excessive licking indicates.

Do you let your dog to lick you?

According to Reynolds, dogs do expose individuals to new and different forms of bacteria, but there is no proof that this increases your resistance to any diseases. She claims that since humans are unable to develop tolerance to certain of the illnesses that dogs carry (such as parasites), they can just keep infecting you. Simply said, certain of the microorganisms that dogs carry in their saliva are not suited for humans to endure. “If you can, try to stay away from them.” Even though you shouldn’t completely stop allowing your dog to lick you, you should try to keep your face and any open sores off-limits.

My dog keeps licking and biting my hands; why?

You learn that mouthing is a common approach for pups to explore. Since everything is new to them, nipping at things, people, and other dogs is an instinctive approach for them to get to know this completely unfamiliar environment. Normally, the mother teaches her pups how to curb their biting, but occasionally, puppies are taken away from their mothers and placed in new homes too soon, preventing them from understanding this crucial lesson. As a result of not learning from his mother how to manage this instinct, the puppy may bite when he is older. Dogs will also nip when they want to be noticed. Since they are voiceless, they reason that a love bite would persuade you to provide them with the care they need. Dogs may also tenderly bite a person if they enjoy the flavor of our salty skin. Sometimes food residue or odors get on owners as well, and as a playful way to show his interest, Boogeyman may lick and bite you.

When older dogs play, love bites happen frequently as well. A good dog friend will treat you to a love bite, which is the canine equivalent of giving your friend a high five or hugging your partner. Even their fun bites can be too strong for some dogs, and although unintentional, these love bites could wind up hurting other dogs or even you. The American Medical Veterinary Association (AMVA) claims that although dogs find playing nibble with people amusing, it can quickly turn hazardous. To prevent inciting these “love bites that could damage you,” they advise against vigorous tug-of-war and wrestling with your dog. Some dog owners additionally reward their dogs for their fun nibbles by stroking or otherwise rewarding them while they are performing a love bite. In other words, when Boogeyman is nibbling your chin, be careful to grin, giggle, and snuggle with him.

How can you know whether your dog truly cares for you?

We freely admit that we love our dogs as dog owners. Why else would we get out of a warm bed and bring them outside in the early morning cold? Why do we take them home for dinner after leaving a wonderful restaurant before dessert? Why do we forgive them right away after they eat our favorite slippers? For many of us, it would be an understatement to suggest that dogs are “man’s best friend. However, the nagging query is, “Do our dogs love us back?”

What does research say?

An inventive group of researchers at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, used a clinical method to study dogs’ emotional states. The scientists subjected them to several smells while using MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) to scan their brains. Data on the canines’ emotional states came from changes in brain function.

Why do smells exist? Dogs use their sense of smell to explore their surroundings. Dogs, unlike humans, actually rely more on smell than sight to understand their environment. Dogs’ emotional states are reflected in how they interpret and react to odours. The canine brain was stimulated during the experiment using smells. The brain responses of dogs to the smells of both known and strange persons and pets were observed using MRI.

According to the study, a dog’s reward center (the caudate nucleus) was stimulated when it detected the familiar scent of its owner. Numerous dopamine receptors are found in the caudate nucleus, which, like the canine brain, becomes active in response to pleasurable experiences in human brains. For instance, the aroma of your favorite dish boiling on the stove may stimulate your memory. The canines responded more favorably to human aromas than to the scent of canine friends out of all the smells provided to them. And when a dog truly scented a familiar person, their caudate nucleus was most strongly engaged. Humans react similarly when they see images of the individuals they care about.

The caudate nucleus of a dog responds most strongly to the smell of a familiar person.

Budapest-based researchers investigated canine brain activity in a related study to understand what happens in the dog’s brain when we speak to them. Similar to how the human brain reacts to pleasant noises, the canine brain activates the auditory cortex in response. This demonstrates how well humans and dogs can communicate, supporting the relationship between humans and animals.

Science has taught us that dogs are sociable, emotional creatures who react to human sounds and odours. They respond to the scent of us and the tone of our voice with joy. Science demonstrates that a portion of the canine brain is connected to pleasant emotions, and that dogs actually sense affection for the people they live with.

How can you tell if your dog loves you?

Here are several signs that show your dog loves you more than just a new bag of chow and a stroll around the park:

  • Your dog greets you with joy. When you enter through the door, your dog could leap, bark, and become too emotional. He might be more subdued, however, and only wag his tail to the right when he hears your greeting.
  • Your dog brings you gifts. Your dog occasionally brings you his favorite toy prepared for play, but more frequently, he gives it to you as a gift. He desires to “sharing his favorite item with the one he loves.
  • Only food is more important than your dog. Your dog craves you more than food! Canines reside in the “now. They will put aside social engagement when they are starving and given a bowl of food in favor of the pleasure of a satisfying meal. Dogs want you though when the bowl is empty! After meals, many dogs prefer to cuddle with their owners.
  • Your dog enjoys joining you in bed. When resting in the outdoors, dogs naturally lie in a protective position to protect themselves from potential hazards to their environment. They stand with their backs to the other pack members to create a protective circle while pointing their noses to the wind to detect any danger. They are showing that they trust you and see you as a member of their pack by being willing to cuddle up next to you on the couch. You are a member of their close-knit family.
  • Your dog gives you a kind gaze. In the canine world, making direct eye contact might be viewed as aggressive behavior. In order to respect the dominant dog when two dogs first meet, one will turn away. Your dog is bestowing you with a loving stare when his eyes are relaxed and his pupils are of normal size.
  • Your dog doesn’t give a damn about how you look. The likelihood that your dog will embrace you when you have bad breath in the morning, after a sweaty workout, or when your hair is out of control is high. Dogs truly do love us without conditions.
  • Your dog is always right behind you. Consider yourself adored if you feel as though your dog must follow you around the house at all times. Dogs attach to you for reasons other than safety. They crave your companionship more than other human companions do.

Better now? You can now feel confident in the love your dog has for you. The puppy adores you!

If you cry, do dogs care?

What can you do to instantly improve a terrible day a little bit? Dog owners can claim that it is time spent with man’s best buddy in fur. And a recent study suggests that your beloved dog might be eager to assist.

Previous studies have demonstrated that when people cry, their pets also experience distress. According to a recent study, dogs not only experience distress when they observe their owners’ sadness, but they also attempt to provide comfort.

The results were released in the journal Learning and Behavior today, July 24.

34 pet dogs of various types and sizes were brought into the lab with their owners for the study. The owners were instructed to say, “Help,” in either a monotone or distressed voice, every 15 seconds while sitting (good human!) behind a glass door so the dogs could see and hear them. [In Pictures: Popular Pets in America]

The pet owners in the trials who were portraying a non-distressed state were instructed to hum “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” in between their cries for assistance. They were instructed to create sobbing noises in between their calls during the trials in which they shown signs of discomfort. The researchers recorded the dogs’ actions in both situations and monitored the pups’ heart rates for variations in beat frequency that would signify stress.

Additionally, the dogs were able to open the door that led to their owners by softly touching it with their paws or noses. The door was secured shut by three tiny magnets.

Dogs didn’t open the door more frequently when their owners sobbed than when they hummed, the study discovered. According to senior study author Julia Meyers-Manor, an assistant professor of psychology at Ripon College, “Dogs prefer to be with their owners, therefore even in our situation when the dogs were exposed to humming, they still went to their owners around half the time.”

According to Meyers-Manor, the dogs that did manage to open the door did it around 40 seconds quicker when their owners were sobbing than when they were humming.

Additionally, the researchers discovered that dogs who pushed through the door displayed less stress than those who did not penetrate the door by contrasting their actions as they witnessed and heard their owners sob with how they typically acted. The number of “stressful behaviors” the dogs displayed each second allowed the researchers to measure this.

The researchers also detected some variation in the heart rates of the stressed dogs, but Meyers-Manor explained that this data was a little trickier to analyze because you usually need approximately two minutes of data to obtain a solid reading. However, in several instances, the trial was over after the dogs opened the door after only around 20 seconds.

The study may also have been limited by the humans’ varying capacity to express their distress through behavior, according to the study’s authors. In other words, some individuals had poor acting skills.