Have you ever noticed your dog seems to lick the carpet a lot? If so, you may have wondered why is my dog constantly licking the carpet? This article will dive into the reasons why dogs lick the carpet as well as how to stop them from licking it.
Reasons Why Dogs Lick the Carpet
Boredom is a common reason why dogs find ways of entertaining themselves. They may take your shoes, socks, or other items you have lying around to keep themselves occupied. Some dogs also will lick things, like the carpet, to keep busy.
Try and tire your dog out as much as possible, especially before you get busy for the day. Doing this will help make sure your dog is tired and more interested in a nap then looking for things to do or lick.
Some dogs lick things constantly because of obsessive-compulsive behavior. My dog has OCD and sometimes she just gets obsessed with the smallest things and the licking will begin.
If your dog seems to be obsessing over something, try and distract them with a toy or another activity. If your dog is difficult to distract and they keep licking the carpet, you may want to talk to your vet.
My dog is actually on medicine for OCD because she sometimes can’t control herself, and it got to a point where I couldn’t get her to stop certain behaviors easily so we had to get help.
Something Tastes Good
Another reason your dog may be licking the carpet is that there is a scent or something on the carpet that tastes good to them. Maybe someone dropped crumbs there or they had a left-over treat lying around so a spot on the carpet still tastes like the treat.
My dog licks the carpet the most after she has had a tasty snack in that spot, it’s like she is trying to get every last crumb of it up. To avoid this, make sure to vacuum your carpet regularly to get any crumbs, and you can feed your dog their treats on a different surface or in their dog bowl.
Sometimes your dog constantly licking the carpet is a sign of digestive upset. When our dogs have an upset stomach, their instinct is to do something to help the issue which is why some dogs eat grass or take to obsessive behavior like licking to cure themselves.
My dog had a super sensitive stomach as a younger dog and she used to lick the carpet more regularly then. Talk to your vet, sometimes a simple diet change is all that is needed to ease your dog’s digestive issues.
If your dog only licks the carpet every now and then it most likely isn’t an issue to be overly concerned about. Look at how often your dog resorts to this behavior and then seek veterinary help if you feel like it’s needed.
How to Stop your Dog from Licking the Carpet
As discussed earlier, boredom is one reason dogs try to find things to keep themselves busy, such as licking. If you give your dog plenty of exercise, you’ll find that your dog is too tired to lick anything.
Distract your Dog with Toys
When your dog starts licking, try pulling out a toy to get them focused on something else. Often times if the behavior is out of boredom your dog will be easily distracted by a play session with a toy as the licking was just to keep them busy.
Keep the Carpet Clean
As discussed above, keeping the carpet as clean as possible is a great way to ensure no extra crumbs are lying around. Also, make sure to shampoo the carpet every so often so that any smells that have accumulated will be cleaned away.
Talk to your Vet
If all else fails and you can’t stop your dog from licking the carpet, you should definitely talk to your vet. Sometimes OCD behavior can become more dangerous if left unaddressed. Occasional carpet licking isn’t the biggest deal but other OCD behaviors could be.
Additionally, if an upset stomach is the cause of all the licking, your vet may be able to recommend a good diet change that could help.
If your dog occasionally licks the carpet you probably have nothing to be concerned about. However, if your dog constantly licks the carpet you may want to figure out how to reduce this behavior.
Keeping the carpet clean, exercise, and distraction with toys is a good place to start. If this behavior seems to be more obsessive in nature or is because of a frequent upset stomach, talk to your vet to make sure there is nothing to be worried about.
Does your dog lick the carpet a lot? What helped them stop? Let me know in the comments!