Is your dog constantly licking her paws or other parts of her body? Excessive licking can be caused by a number of factors, such as allergies, fleas, and other skin irritations. However, it can also be due to pain or emotional issues such as boredom. This page looks at some common causes of excessive licking in dogs, and how natural remedies such as herbs, homeopathy, and supplements can help.
Why is my dog licking herself all the time? This is a question that many dog owners have. It is of course normal for dogs to lick themselves sometimes, but if the licking is becoming excessive, it may be an indication of the presence of some underlying physical or emotional problems.
Understanding the possible causes of excessive licking in dogs is therefore important. As you will see, there are numerous possible reasons. If you cannot identify the cause of your dog's excessive licking, it is advisable to take her to a vet for a check-up. Only by properly identifying and tackling the underlying cause can we stop our dog from licking, chewing, and scratching himself excessively.
If your dog is constantly licking herself, check to see if she has any skin problems caused by:
If you cannot find any skin irritations or problems that may have caused your dog's constant licking, here are other possibilities to consider:
Also, according to Dr. Dobias, DVM, dog collars can cause damage to the nerves supplying the front legs if the dog pulls constantly on the leash. This can lead to an abnormal sensation in the feet and dogs may start licking their front paws. Removing the collar (and using a harness instead) and treating the neck injury will stop the licking.
Sometimes persistent and focused dog licking can cause hair loss, serious lesions and sores, resulting in a condition called lick granulomas (a.k.a. acral lick dermatitis).
Lick granulomas can lead to hard-to-heal infections that can be extremely painful.
If your dog continues to lick one specific part of his body excessively, pay careful attention and stop the licking before it causes damage.
While you are working with a vet to figure out the underlying cause of your dog's excessive licking, you can consider using some of the following natural remedies to stop the licking.
Chamomile is a very effective and safe calming herb that can be given to dogs who are stressed out. One easy way is to make a cup of chamomile tea, let it cool down and then add some of the tea to your dog's food. (About one to four teaspoon depending on the size of the dog.)
This remedy contains Oat, Skullcap, St. John's Wort, and more, and can effectively calm an anxious dog that exhibits unwanted behaviors such as licking.