Why does my dog keep licking the carpet?
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Q:

Why does my dog keep licking the carpet?

A:

Quick Answer

A dog licking a carpet can be due to a behavior-related issue, a neurological problem, a health reason or boredom. Dogs can exhibit compulsive behavior, which is the adherence to a certain set of behavior patterns for a consistent period. Compulsion is usually associated with anxiety and may require therapy or the attention of a veterinarian.

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Full Answer

The Nest notes more serious issues such as neurological problems or parasitic infections as possible reasons for carpet licking. Failing health, allergies or digestive problems can also play a role in a dog acting strangely. Less alarming reasons may be that the animal is bored or under stimulated. Training the dog or taking him out for exercise can curb the behavior.

Pet Place suggests using positive reinforcement to prevent dogs from licking carpet. The dog may have learned he gets attention whenever engaging in certain behaviors. Ignoring the dog when he licks the carpet is a way of dissuading this type of behavior. Pet owners can also give the animal a treat when he does not lick the carpet. Another way to prevent such behavior is to not allow the dog on the carpet or to change the flooring. Keeping the pet busy with toys and other diversions also detracts from carpet fixation.

A dog may also be interested in crumbs or a certain type of lotion or perfume that may have hit the floor. A dog can also be preoccupied with a particular smell on the carpet.

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