admin Posted on 2:38 am

Ten Reasons Why Cocker Spaniels Lick Each Other

Why do cocker spaniels lick themselves and is it harmful?

Licking is a natural behavior that goes back to the wolf. When the mother wolf returned from hunting her food, the cubs in her pack would lick her mouth and face to stimulate regurgitation. This is normal behavior during the weaning stages. Soon after, the pups bond and learn to forage for their own food. Interestingly enough, the mother wolf also licked her pups in exchange for encouraging the pups to relieve herself. It’s no surprise to learn that licking is a natural instinct that all dogs inherit. There are different types of licking behaviors and many reasons why dogs lick for daily routines and also for survival.

Cocker Spaniel licking can be due to a variety of reasons. Some can be complex, but most are easy to understand and fix. Let’s take a look at the possible reasons first.

Reasons why dogs lick

1) A submissive social behavior: respect a dominant dog
2) Pups lick their mothers’ faces to request food upon weaning
3) A show of affection – dog kisses
4) Personal cleanliness of the dog: a natural instinct learned as a puppy
5) Dog Manipulation Tactic: Lick for Attention
6) Own hygiene and garbage
7) Stress
8) Dog health problems
9) Cleaning wounds
10) Injury – bread

when to worry

If your Cocker Spaniel is a compulsive licker, it may be time to investigate the reasons. For example: is your dog left alone for long periods of time? Stressed by separation anxiety? Is your dog hurt? Are there skin lesions? Is your dog sick? Obsessive licking can lead to scratching or biting at the area, which could present other problems. Compulsive – Obsessive licking behaviors can often be related to a dog feeling anxious.

The first place to start is by inspecting the source. Maybe something is stuck to his skin or fur, look for cuts between the legs. Look for rashes under the coat. Look for possible parasites. Look for anything unusual that may be causing the dog to lick itself. If it’s a skin condition, it’s most likely an easy fix.

On the other hand, if your dog is compulsively licking everything in sight, then there could be more concern. Licking you into submission can be cute at first. But it will shoot soon. It may be a learned behavior to manipulate him to get his attention and get what he wants. The behavior needs to be broken.

Do not reward the dog for the behavior. By this I mean never give your dog a treat to stop him from licking. If you give in, the dog will simply have learned a new trick. When the dog starts licking he simply diverts his attention to a different activity. But he must first stop licking with a strong verbal command NO. Never hit or yell at your Cocker Spaniel, be firm and gentle.

Is licking harmful?

Dogs have been licking humans for hundreds of years and I have never heard of someone dying from an innocent kiss from a dog. All dogs love the taste of salt, this is one of the main reasons why they lick humans. With that said, it’s important to note that you should never allow a dog to lick his open wounds. This could increase the risk of infection by introducing pathogenic bacteria into the wound. Despite what you may have heard, possible transmission of a disease or infection by a dog licking an open wound should be avoided.

As long as your Cocker Spaniel is healthy and not showing signs of illness, it’s a safe bet that playful licking is not harmful unless he is ticklish. At worst, it can be very annoying; at best it can be a show of affection.

Always check with your local vet or a professional trainer if you feel your pup has a licking problem that is beyond your control. Compulsive – Obsessive licking behaviors are often related to a dog feeling anxious for some reason. Your vet or a professional dog trainer can help you discover the source and offer remedies. There is no need for your pup to suffer unnecessarily and stress you out at the same time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *