Q:

Why is my dog licking the air?

A:

Quick Answer

Licking the air is often a compulsive behavior that helps dogs cope with anxiety, but it can also be a sign that a dog isn't feeling well. In either case, it is not a behavior that should be ignored.

  Know More

Full Answer

According to the ASPCA, anxious dogs might use several different compulsive behaviors to soothe themselves. These compulsive behaviors include air licking, chomping at the air, spinning and pacing, generally in direct response to triggers that make the dog nervous. However, if a dog does not seem anxious, air licking may be a sign of physical illness. VetStreet lists several health concerns that share air licking as a common symptom. These problems range in severity from nausea and gastrointestinal discomfort to seizures. Dental pain is another common cause of air licking.

Even if a dog is simply licking the air to relieve anxiety, a dog who cannot calm down without engaging in compulsive behaviors should be brought to a veterinarian for an evaluation. In some cases, a seemingly harmless compulsive behavior like air licking can escalate into self-destructive habits that may lead to injury. While some anxious dogs might need more exercise and a better diet, others require medication to help them lead normal lives.

Learn more about Dogs

Related Questions

  • Q:

    How do you treat ant bites on a dog?

    A:

    Treat ant bites on dogs by applying a cool water compress to the affected area for five to 10 minutes and covering the bites to prevent licking and scratching, according to Greencross Vets. Soak paw bites in cool water prior to covering.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How old does a dog have to be before it can breed?

    A:

    A female dog is bred for the first time during her second heat cycle or after, provided that she is no older than 12 years of age. A male dog is ready to breed by about 15 months of age.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you find out how old your dog is?

    A:

    While it's not possible to determine precisely how old a dog is, it is possible to make a fairly accurate estimate of its age by examining the condition of the dog's teeth. In addition, a veterinarian may be able to provide an even more accurate guess by means of a physical exam or running a series of tests to look at the dog's joints, bones, muscles and organs.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How much does a dog weigh

    A:

    Dogs weigh anywhere from 3 to 200 pounds; their weight varies significantly based on their breed. For instance, a small Chipoo weighs only 3 pounds, while a large Saint Bernard weighs up to 200 pounds. However, weight can also vary within breeds; a miniature Schnoodle weighs just six pounds, while a standard Schnoodle weighs up to 75 pounds.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore