Why Does My Dog Lick Me After a Shower?

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Every time you get out of the shower, your dog rushes over and starts licking your legs. While you love your pup, you don't exactly want a tongue bath after you just rinsed off.

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This is just another odd but funny dog behavior, and the reason your pup is doing it is likely logical if you think about it.


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Here are some of the reasons why dogs lick their dog owners after a shower, and whether or not it's good for them.

Your dog is cleaning you off

Dogs groom by licking themselves; it's something they learn from the time they are puppies, when their mothers lick them. You may have even seen your own dog start licking himself after you give him a bath. Your dog might think that one of his duties is to clean you up as well.


Your dog likes water

Dogs don't just drink water out of their bowls. They also like to lick up water that's in puddles. Do you ever notice how your dog may lick a wet bathroom floor after you shower, too? He may be thirsty or just love the taste of water on you.


Your dog cares about you

Mother dogs will also lick their puppies to show affection and care and ensure they start bonding. Of course, your dog loves and cares about you as well. When he starts licking the water off your legs when you get out of the shower, he's demonstrating that affection and bond you have as well.


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Your dog likes how your shower products taste

You may use yummy-smelling body wash during your shower or apply lotion when you're done. If your pup likes how these taste, he may lick them off your legs after you get out of the shower.


Your dog is being submissive

Sometimes licking in dogs is a submissive behavior. In the wild, subordinate members of a pack will sometimes lick the more dominant members, which helps maintain pack harmony. While dogs do not view us as their pack leaders, licking others may still feel like a natural behavior for your dog. (If this is the reason, he'll likely lick you at other times as well.)



Your dog just loves to lick

Licking releases endorphins for dogs, which makes them happy. It can also relax them. If he starts licking you after a shower, perhaps he wants to feel good and try to illicit a positive reaction from you at the same time. If you never stopped him from licking off your legs or feet before, then why should he stop now? He knows it's going to get a positive response.


Should you let your dog lick you after a shower?

If your dog is licking you excessively—and not just after a shower—he could be experiencing stress and anxiety and is just trying to calm down with self-soothing behaviors. Some things that could be stressing your dog out include moving to a new environment or bringing a new pet or person into the home. It's also possible your dog is losing his memory) if he's older and he may be confused. If the licking seems to be getting out of hand, or if it's a sudden and intense new behavior, you should take your dog to his veterinarian for a full examination.


Let's say you put lotion on after a shower and your dog licks it off your legs. This is not healthy because your lotion could contain ingredients that are toxic to dogs. These products can cause your dog to have an upset stomach, diarrhea, vomiting, panting, and increased urination and thirst. If your dog shows any of these signs of discomfort, take him to the vet.

Otherwise, if your dog is just licking off water, then it should be harmless. If you don't like this behavior, you can try to train him not to do it.

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How to train your dog to stop licking you after a shower

To get your dog to stop licking you after a shower, you should ignore then and not show any attention whenever they do it. Try giving your dog a toy to play with instead, or say "no!" when he starts licking and then walk away from him. If you laugh or say "good dog" when he's licking you, then he won't stop doing it because he knows it makes you happy.


Your dog may be licking you after a shower to show affection, to taste water or lotions, to show submission, to groom you, to demonstrate respect, or to calm himself down. If you don't like it, you can always train him not to do it. Remember to never yell at your pup, because this is not an ethical or effective training method. If there's a deeper issue going on, or if your dog's licking behavior is new or seems excessive, take them to the vet for an exam.


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