Why does a dog lick everything?

Answer

Many different conditions can cause a dog to lick compulsively, ranging from anxiety and a desire for attention to diseases of the adrenal, gastrointestinal, neurological or dental systems. The first step that a veterinarian takes to identify the correct malfunctioning bodily system in the dog is a total physical exam, as well as a thorough neurological screening.

Anxiety is one of the most common causes, as well as one that requires the least invasive forms of intervention from a veterinarian. When pets lack significant interaction with their owners and lack an adequate amount of exercise in their daily routines, anxiety is a result. Dogs carry out their frustration and worry by taking on compulsive behaviors, including appearing to lick everything in sight.

The diet of the dog is fodder for analysis as well, as nausea is also one of the most common causes for compulsive licking. Understanding how much a dog eats, what it eats and how often it eats are all a part of this equation. Adding too many treats and table scraps might make a dog much friendlier, but it can add stress to the digestive process that leads it to lick as a coping mechanism. The systemic causes are much rarer and require a much more invasive form of treatment.

Q&A Related to "Why does a dog lick everything?"
Some dogs lick to gain information about what objects are. Sometimes they do it as an obsessive behavior which if this is the case it may be a good idea to take the dog to the vet
http://www.ask.com/web-answers/Science/Nature/why_...
Excessive licking of objects by dogs is not uncommon. Obsessive behaviors like licking are disruptive and detrimental to both the dog and their family. Understanding why dogs do it,
http://www.ehow.com/about_5318940_dog-constantly-l...
A dog's constant, repetitive licking of objects or surfaces is a problem whose
http://www.chacha.com/question/why-does-my-dog-lic...
It depends what it is licking. If it is licking you, this is a sign of affection. If it is licking itself it may be in discomfort, have an irritation, or may be anxious from isolation
http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Why_does_your_dog_lick_e...
1 Additional Answer
Ask.com Answer for: why does my dog lick everything
Dogs lick faces as a form of greeting. Licking may also be used as a means of bonding or showing affection.
If your dog seems to be licking itself or other things excessively, it's best to take it to the veterinarian.
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