Why Do Dogs Lick Their Paws and Is This a Problem?

Dogs are America’s most common pets by far. Whether you’re a new pet parent or have had your pup for several years, your dog’s habit of licking its paws is hard to ignore. But why do dogs lick their paws and should it be a cause for concern?

As with most aspects of pet care, there isn’t one single answer. There are several reasons why dogs lick their paws, including some that could be a problem. Let’s take a look at some of them below.



Most dogs will lick their paws from time to time as a part of their grooming ritual. This is the likely reason if your dog licks its paws after meals, after coming in from the outdoors, or before sleeping.

In this instance, the paw-licking habits are 100% healthy and normal. However, you should stay alert to changing behaviors because it can be a sign of a problem.



The old cliche “licking their wounds” may be very relevant to your pup. Whether your dog was injured, has allergies, or has fleas doesn’t matter. Painful or irritated skin will cause your dog to lick their paws more frequently.

If you suspect that your pup is in pain, you can look for other signs, such as wincing or yelping. Alternatively, you may want to visually inspect your pup’s paws.


Separation Anxiety

When asking “why do dogs lick their paws?”, you must not only consider the times when you’re together. If your pup sufferers from boredom or separation anxiety, paw-licking is a very common outcome. And it may cause sores.

You can prevent this issue, however, by booking professional dog walking services in Raleigh when you’re away. When combined with your affection, excessive licking should stop.

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