Dogs make for wonderful pets and are incredibly friendly creatures. If you own a dog, you might as well prepare yourself for several quirky behaviors.
Unlike most other animals, dogs are quite expressive with their owners, and are going to show their contempt or their happiness at almost every turn.
Therefore, you are going to notice a significant change in the animal’s behavior as it continues to grow. They have a pretty long tongue, and dogs usually consider their tongue to be a tool through which they can interact with the environment. You might notice your dog sniffing around and licking different things.
More importantly, you should know that licking is the dog’s way of communicating with others, including their owners. Now, a lot of people are flustered as to why their dog prefers to lick them in the morning without any cause.
Even if you close the door, you should know that dogs are incredibly intelligent creatures, and if you have a big breed, it will learn how to press the handle and unlock the door.
You might notice that your dog walks into the room in the early hours of the morning and then starts licking your face all over. Some people like being woken up with a spattering of love, while others absolutely despise it.
However, you need to understand exactly what’s causing this behavior, and more importantly, what you can do about it.
If you do not do anything and show love toward the animal, this behavior will be reinforced. Dogs are creatures of habit and they look at their owner for social cues. If the dog gets a good response from you, they will start following this behavior.
If they don’t, they will soon stop. Remember, a dog’s sole purpose is to make sure that they keep their owner happy.
If the dog realizes that their owner isn’t happy with their behavior, they will curb it. But, why does a dog feel this compulsive need to lick in the morning? You might want to understand the basics and then learn about their behavioral changes as well.
What Causes This Behavior?
Dogs have a tendency to lick things, and their owners, for a number of different reasons. Whether the dog is out in the streets or in the wild, or if they are just lying around the house, there are a number of reasons why dogs prefer licking their owners.
This is a behavior that starts way back when a dog is still a puppy. The mother begins to lick her litter to communicate with her younglings.
The licking also has another effect: it stimulates breathing in the puppy’s little body and also helps in keeping the puppies clean. You will also see this behavior being adopted by dogs out in the wild. You will see these little pups licking around their mother’s mouth.
This is a way of expressing love for the animal, and it’s also a type of social bonding.
More importantly, animals lick because they want to groom themselves. For instance, some adult dogs are probably going to lick each other because they want to get over their differences. It’s a form of reconciliation for them. In some cases, a dog that wants to submit to another might start licking them.
It’s a form of submission by the animal. You need to understand that dogs were pack animals and have evolved from wolves, and as a result of that, many of their behaviors have remained the same.
That is one of the reasons why the subordinate members in the pack might be licking the superior ones. It’s a way for them to maintain the status quo and keep things peaceful.
But what about your face in the early hours of the morning? Well, dogs usually do that because they are trying to greet you. Think of it as a “hello” in the early morning. But, that’s not all.
This might come as a surprise to most people, but dogs will lick your face in the morning because they simply like the way you taste.
During the night, your skin tends to secrete a variety of different oils and sweat, all of which pile up on the upper layer of the skin. This attracts dogs because your scent intensifies in the early hours of the morning, and the dog really wants to taste the salt on your skin.
That is one of the main reasons why the dog will jump on the bed and will start lapping you up right away. However, you should know that your reaction plays an incredibly important role in all of this.
If you bring about a smile on your face and show some love to the animal, the dog will know that you like this behavior, and will continue with it.
If you push the dog away or start locking the door, the animal will soon get the hint, and will stop performing this behavior altogether.
Another reason why a dog might start licking your face is if you have any remnants of food on your face. You might not even be aware of them, because some are so tiny.
However, a dog is able to taste and smell very easily, and might start licking them off of your face.
What Can You Do About It?
There are a number of things that you can do about this. If you like this behavior, you can just show your love for the animal, and it’s only going to improve the bond between the two of you.
If you don’t like it, you can always express your dissent, and the dog will learn soon after that you do not like this. It’s not a problem by any means, it’s just going to be a bit difficult for the first few days for your dog to control itself.
Before long, your dog will stop doing this altogether and you can sleep comfortably!
I have a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When I’m not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies…I’m at home with my wife, two daughters and a dog. Outside of family, I love grilling and barbequing on my Big Green Egg and working on projects around the house.