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Dog Behavior Problems and Training

Should Face Licking Be Encouraged?


Dog caresses and shows affection by licking; it is his way of showing love and appreciation for the person he does it to. But face licking should be encouraged and needs to be stopped. If he is stopped from doing this as a small puppy, he will learn to lay his face against his owner's cheek without the licking.

Licking, after all, can be a cause of infection to owners in rare cases, and not all dogs live a completely clean life. Most of them drink water from the toilet, eat manure, and lick their behinds which not only their own but those of other dogs that might not be as healthy as yours. Therefore you should train your dogs the command "No Lick" to be followed by a kiss behind their ears and then have their chests very slowly and gently scratched.

So many dog owners rub their dogs when praising them, which makes most dogs bad-tempered. Rubbing the hair the wrong way is particularly obnoxious to a dog, whereas the gentle smoothing of the hair on the chest or on the rump is particularly pleasing to them. They love being scratched on top of the tail because it is an area of pleasure. In addition, there are other areas of pleasure; behind the ears, under the lower jaw, on the ribs behind the front legs, on the tummy and especially between the front legs. Dog owners must find out which pleases each individual dog best and keep that pleasure for a reward, as well as to please the dog.

If you notice that your dog is excessively licking their bodies, this could a sign that may indicate an allergy, constipation or a skin disease. Some people think that dogs wash themselves like cats; well, they do not. Sometimes when dogs get their paws wet, you will see them licking that area to dry, just as a female dog licks her puppies to clean and dry them. Dogs should be allowed to lick the hand because hands can easily be washed before touching food. However, generally speaking, licking should be avoided and stopped at an early age.

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