What could be cuter than your puppy offering his doggy pal a smooch on the nose? Nopoint, really. But is your dog actually planting a kiss on his buddy? Yes, however that"s just one factor your dog may lick an additional dog"s muzzle.

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What Your Dog Wants

During an development, a timid and also lower-ranking dog will certainly lower his head, avoid direct eye call and gently extfinish his tongue to lick the muzzle of a much more dominant, confident and higher-ranking dog. The initially dog licks the muzzle of the second dog to sindicate reconfirm that he comes in peace. Think of this as the doggy identical of social kissing.

Dogs that are already friends will certainly additionally profession smooches. Two strongly bonded canine pals will lick and also groom each various other. They provide each other “dog kisses” in displays of affection and also friendship. In this scenario, the dogs’ social hierarchy is not an worry. These dogs recognize and also trust each various other. They additionally look out for each other: A dog who excessively licks the muzzle of his canine pal might be doing this because the dog has a tumor, cut or various other clinical need that requires attention and also treatment.

Puppies additionally "kiss" their mothers, however it"s not a gesture of affection. When puppies make the shift from suckling their mother’s teats for milk to eating semisolid food, they strongly lick their mother’s muzzle in the hope of obtaining her to regurgitate some semi-digested food for them. If you have a dog nursing a litter of puppies, follow your vet’s guidelines to ensure that the puppies are acquiring the appropriate nutrition and also that you recognize when and also how to make the switch from their mother’s milk to puppy food.

How to Respond

Assistance your dog make friends via his peers: Carefully select confident-but-friendly and patient-tempered dogs to play via your shy dog, to help him hone his social abilities. Also think about enrolling him in a special training course that concentrates on socialization, taught by an instructor who is certified in, and also methods, positive training approaches.


This write-up is excerpted from the book What Dogs Want: A Visual Guide to Understanding Your Dog's Eextremely Move.

Do not interfere once your two dogs play “kissy face” briefly via each various other. Sit ago and reap this screen of canine friendship. Then contact them over and also have actually them carry out a command such as “sit” or “shake paws.” Offer them treats at the same time as a reward for being good to each other.

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If you foster a dog and also have three or even more resident dogs, present the foster dog to your brood one dog at a time and let muzzle-licking between them occur naturally. Start through your leastern reenergetic or many friendly dog. Never force an arrival in between the dogs bereason this can deepen the foster dog’s submissiveness or spark a fight.