Why Does My Dog Do That? An Answer to The Most Googled Questions of 2020

As a pet owner, how many times have you asked Google a question to find answers on your dog? Here at The Pet Embassy, we have compiled the most search questions on “Why does my dog do…” and provided in depth answers to make sure you dog remains happy!

Why do dogs lick?

There are many reasons as to why your dogs lick. There are many behavioral reasons for why a dog licks, and they are more common than medical reasons. Therefore, we suggest it is not not usually the sign of a serious health condition however if you believe the licking to be excessive please contact your local vet.

What does it mean when a dog licks you?

Behaviour reasons may include the dog licking or grooming themselves, furniture or other surfaces, and even you! Dogs may lick because they like the salty taste of their owner’s skin, as a sign of affection, or out of habit and boredom. Licking can also be calming or soothing, much like when people receive a relaxing massage.

What does it mean when a dog licks your face?

If you even watch how your dog interacts around other dogs, you will notice that a lot of licking is focused on the face and nose area. This stems from their youth, when dogs were puppies, they use to lick their mother’s mouth to get them to regurgitate food for them to eat. Therefore, dogs may lick your face to try to get food and also taste whatever leftover flavour is left in your mouth after your last meal.

Why is my dog excessively licking themselves?

If you believe your dog is licking excessively or more than usual this can be the sign of an underlying medical issue. Signs of excessive licking will often resemble those caused by behavioual licking. Some medical causes for licking may include allergies that cause their skin or their paws to itch, therefore, licking soothes the itch. Your dog may also have a bacterial infection, from bacteria, fungus or parasites. Your dog may have underlying pain from arthritis or a previous injury, a dog licking their joint is similar to when a human rubs a sore joint or their muscle. This is why we may see a dog licking themselves in a certain spot excessively.

Licking releases endorphins in the dog’s brain which are the body’s natural pain killers and they help to relieve any pain your dog may be in.

Why do dogs lick their private parts?

It is a behavioural instinct. Like us humans dog’s enjoy being relatively clean and a dog will grooming themselves in order to be clean. If you see your dog licking their private parts it is no more than them cleaning that area usually after urinating.

Should you let your dog lick you?

It is a personal preference. For you, it may be an annoyance, but as stated above for them it may be expressing their love for you or tasting that last tasty meal that you had. If you would like information on how to stop them from licking you, please read the next paragraph.

How you teach your dog to stop licking you?

If you want your dog to stop licking you, the best thing you can do is to ignore their behaviour and remove yourself from the situation. If your dog stops licking you, please ensure you give them a lot of positive reinforcement so they do not repeat their behaviour in the future.

Why do dogs eat grass?

Your beloved dog is obviously not a cow and you may be confused when you see your dog eating grass. You may even be worried and have some questions around their health. Sometimes when a dog eats grass is represents some sort of nutritional deficiency, however, more often than not is represents boredom or they simply like the taste of the grass, especially in the summer months when it is green and fresh.

Why is my dog eating grass?

Many dog owners worry about their dog eating grass to make themselves sick as they are feeling poorly or to make themselves sick after something they have eaten. Other dog owners, believe they are eating grass as it is a sign they are lacking in some nutrients.

However, evidence suggest that a lot of dogs are not unwell beforehand, or at least it appears they are not. According to surveys, fewer than 10% of dogs seem to be sick before they consume grass, whilst only 25% of dog owners see their dog throwing up after eating grass.

Should you let your dog eat grass?

It is down to the individual and the reason to which you think your dog is eating grass. If you think that maybe your dog is eating grass because they are bored, you should consider introducing some more exercise into their lifestyle, it doesn’t have to be extraneous, just a little more than what they were doing in their day to day lives previously. If you believe that your dog is eating grass because of a nutritional deficiency, then switching to a high-fibre dog food is a viable option.

How you teach your dog to stop eating grass?

Like with anything with your dog, it is constant actions that will teach your dogs what you perceive to be right or wrong. A simple and firm “no” when your dog is eating grass is enough to assure them that they are doing the right thing.

why does my dog
Cute dog with leaf in mouth. Photo by Josh Hild from Pexels

Why do dogs eat poop?

Dogs eating poop is very similar to them eating grass. Eating poop is normal behaviour at some stage of your dog’s life. For instance, mother dogs will lick their puppies clean to urge them to eliminate and clean up their poop by licking it and eating it. Therefore, puppies will naturally engage in this behaviour.

Why does my dog eat poop?

Besides the early weeks when they are a puppy and it comes naturally for them to consume their own poop, dogs should not really consume their own poop. So then why do they dogs eat poop? Well, in many cases a dog will start to consume their own poop due to some kind of behavioural trigger or environmental stress. For instance, a dog may have some form of Anxiety arise from harsh punishment or methods, during house training. Dogs may poop and then eat their own poop to get rid of the evidence. It could be down to isolation as study’s have shown that dogs who are kept alone are more likely to eat poop than other dogs. Another reason could be that they are attention seeking. Dogs may eat their own poop to get a reaction from their humans, so please do not overreact when you see your dog eating poop.

Is it bad for my dog to eat poop?

Eating their own poop, or the poop from other dogs has a very low chance of harming your dog. Eating poop from other animals, however, may cause some health problems if the poop is contaminated with different types of viruses, parasites and toxins.

How do I stop my dog from eating poop?

There are a few ways to stop dogs from eating poop. Keeping the dog’s living area clean, so that there will be no poop for them to eat is an easy way to eliminate this behaviour. Supervising your dog on walks could help and ensuring you pick up after your dog. Training, is very important. A simple trick such as teaching your dog to come to you for a treat as soon as they have pooped can help.

Why do dogs howl?

Howling is just one of the many forms of vocal communication used by dogs. Dogs howl for a number of reasons such as attracting attention, announcing their presences and making contact with others. Dogs may also howl in response to some higher pitched noises such as emergency sirens or some musical instruments.

Is it bad if my dog howls?

It depends on the reason, if your dog is howling at the passing emergency vehicle then their is not likely to be a problem with your dog. However, if you find out your dog has been howling when you are away this could be separation anxiety howling. Separation anxiety howling only occurs when a dog is left alone or otherwise separated from his owner. This type of howling is commonly associated with one other symptom of separation anxiety. Dogs may also howl if they are hurt of sick, so please look to take them to your local vet to rule out injury.

How do I stop my dog from howling?

Depending on why you dog howls, there are many different ways o stop them. If they are howling due to separation anxiety, then you can either spend more time with them and fill that time with fun activities or reduce their loneliness by providing them with some toys or a companion to play with when you are out the house. If your dogs separation anxiety is severe then you should look into consulting an expert. If your dog is howling at high pitched sounds then you can try desensitising them from such sounds.

why does my dog
Smart dog reading a book? Photo by Samson Katt from Pexels

Why do dogs hump?

Humping in dogs is a common behaviour, which, let’s face it as dog owners we are quite embarrassed by. Often, it has nothing to do with sex, it is more about the dog attempting to assert dominance. Whether that is towards another dog or a human. However, sometimes it can be a sign that your dog is stressed, acting out or over simulated. Rowdy play can sometimes cause your dogs to get over excited and over stimulated.

Is a dog humping a bad thing?

No, not necessarily. It depends on the manner in which your dog humps. They could be playing with another dog and they may take turns in mounting or humping each other in what is a harmless expression of excitement. If your dog is humping your leg regularly, then there may be a little more concern about this behaviour. In addition, a dog that is humping and is also showing odd signs about their body, such as licking or chewing may have some medical issues. If this is the case, please consult your local vet.

How do I stop my dog from humping?

Once you have ruled out that there is no medical cause for your dog humping it is more of a behavioural fix rather than anything else. Since humping is often about dominance you must put into place some training that establishes your authority in your household, therefore, letting the dog know you are in charge. If your dog is well trained, then redirection is your best option. When they begin humping ask them sit, lie down etc. Once this command has been performed, reward them with a treat.

Why do dogs smell?

Dogs do not sweat like us humans do, in fact, they perspire from their paws and their hair follicles. They also produce essential oils for the skin and their hair. In addition, they also have glands in their ears which let of a slightly yeasty scent and anal glands that secrete a must odour. All of these factors add up into a unique smell for each individual dog and helps different dogs to tell each other apart.

Why does my dog smell worse than usual?

If you notice your dog smelling worse than usual, this could be a sign they have some for of bacterial, fungal or yeast infection. Dogs with long floppy ears are more prone to ear infections than ear infections than other dog breeds. In addition, if your dog has bad breath this may be a sign that they have a tooth infection or an infected cavity.

How do I get my dog to smell nice?

Regular washing and grooming is the solution for this. Washing your dog too much can cause skin irritation so please be cautious about the amount of time that you wash your dog. If you use an overly perfumed shampoo, which impacts your dogs smell of themselves you may find them rubbing up against your furniture straight after their wash. If it is your dog’s breath that is smelly, then we recommend looking into daily tooth brushing and buying of some health dog chews which can reduce the build up of plaque and tartar.

why does my dog
Cute puppy winking! Photo by Dominika Roseclay from Pexels

Why do dogs bark?

Similar to howling, it is just one of a dogs many forms of vocal communication. Barking is a normal behaviour for any dog. A dog may bark for many reasons such as when calling out to other dogs, getting their owners attention or expressing emotion.

Why is my dog barking excessively?

Your dog may be barking excessively in certain situations such as when a stranger walks past the house or barking a lot when you are not at home. Situations like these may scare your dog and they have been conditioned to be alarmed by something.

How to stop my dog from barking excessively?

Retraining your dog is a great way to encourage them to stop barking, however it may also be necessary to make some changes to their environment so that they’re less likely to bark when you’re not around.

If you think your dog might be barking because they’re not getting enough exercise or they are bored, then we would recommend taking them on a longer walk than usual or introducing some toys into the house. If your dog is barking because you are not at home then ensure that your dog has adequate stimulation throughout the day in the form of toys or food to keep them occupied during the day.

If your dog is barking because they are stressed in a scenario, such as when the vacuum is on. You should desensitize them to the stimulus by slowly introducing the vacuum in front of them and ensuring they are not stressed in this scenario.

Why do dogs shake?

Dogs seem to understand us better than we understand ourselves at times. They can understand if we are happy or sad just by a change in our voice. However, for humans to interpret dogs behaviour it is much more difficult.

Why is my dog shaking?

Dogs may shake to get rid of excess water. If your dog has just gone for a swim or has gotten wet on their walk, they will shake themselves to get dry. It is actually very good for your dog and can help to prevent hypothermia.

A dog may shake due to stress or fear, which is very commonly seen when there are fireworks going off. If your dog is shaking then they may also be panting or whimpering. If they are anxious often, it is a good idea to monitor them and see what it is that sets of this reaction.

Dogs will also shake in the cold, similar to how we shake in the cold. Despite having fur to keep them warm, some dogs are very sensitive to the cold.

Sometimes a dog will shake because of muscle weakness. This will usually be their legs shaking and in particular their rear legs. Usually, your dog will stop shaking when they have had time to rest but if this problem persists we recommend taking them to a vet or under going some exercises to strengthen their muscles.

Why do small dogs shake more than large dogs?

Smaller dog breeds are more sensitive to the cold than larger dog breeds and this will cause them to shake more when on a walk or around the house. We would recommend investing in a nice warm coat for them when they are on their walks.

why does my dog
Ready for work! Photo by Sam Lion from Pexels

Why do dogs scratch?

Scratching is another common behaviour on dogs. A dog will scratch themselves to alleviate an itch or something in their fur. Sometimes a dog will scratch furniture in order to warm up their beds or find a more comfortable sleeping position. However, sometimes they will dig and scratch furniture out of boredom.

Why does my dog scratch excessively?

If your dog is scratching themselves excessively you should check if they have fleas or ticks in their fur first. Fleas saliva is very allergenic, so it can make your dog very itchy at the site of the bite. Fleas will leave behind little black flakes on the skin of your dog. Tick bites create inflammation at the point of entry and this can worsen the longer the tick is attached to the skin of your dog.

Dogs may also have mange which is microscopic insects that burrow deep into the layers of your dogs skin. Usually this is around the armpits, groin and areas with minimal hair.

Your dog may be having an allergic reaction to some food that they have eaten recently. Some dogs have allergy’s to specific protein and the reaction can lead to skin inflammation and itching.

Lastly, during the spring and summer months, some dogs may experience seasonal allergies. Blooming plants and flowers, grasses, weeds, and trees are common contributors to seasonal allergies.

How do I stop my dog scratching?

To stop a dog excessively itching, we would recommend looking into some flea and tick preventatitves. If your dog has fleas or ticks, there are some home remedies available which can help with killing of the fleas or ticks. There are also many flea and tick killers online. If the problem persists, please contact your local vet.

If you believe your dog is itching and scratching themselves due to mange, there are many dips, injections and spot on treatments that can be used to treat mange. Sometimes, a dogs immune system is able to fight off the infection.

For allergies, it is important you find out what is the cause of the allergy and removing your dog from it. If it is seasonal, please brush your dogs hair regularly to remove any of the pollen from their skin to ensure they remain happy and healthy. If it is nutritional, then please check their diet and replace it with something that is not likely to cause them to have a reaction.

Why do dogs bite?

Dogs biting is a common behaviour. It doesn’t matter if your dog is big or small, male or female, most dogs will bite if they are provoked. Dogs usually bite as a reaction to something. If the dog finds themselves in a stressful situation, they might bite to defend themselves or their territory.

Dogs may bite because they are not feeling well and they may want to be left alone if you are too close to them or in their personal space. Sometimes everyone needs some alone time, even your loving and friendly dog.

However, not every time your dog bites is it a warning or because they feel stressed. Dogs may bite when they are playing with other dogs or indeed with humans. Whilst, biting during playing may be fun for the dog it may lead to an injury for humans, therefore, we recommend avoiding playing tug-of-war or wrestling if you do not want to get bitten.

How do I stop my dog from biting?

Socialisation and early training are the best ways to stop your dog from biting. This will help your dog feel better in different situations. Introducing your dog to people or other dogs when they are a puppy will enable them to feel better when they are older.

If you found our answers to “Why Does My Dog Do That? An Answer to The Most Googled Questions of 2020” helpful please let us know in the comment section below.

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