Animal behavior – dog licking the floor constantly


[ad name=”Pam3″]

Dear Your Own Vet,

I have male miniature dachshund who is about a year and a half.  He often has his nose to the ground which is understandable as he is a hound but the only problem with that is he often licks the carpets and the wooden floors around our house.  I have tried verbally telling him not to lick and I’ve also tried smacking him (softly).  Nothing seems to work.  I asked my local vet why he does that and he said that it may be a lack of something in his diet.  The vet didn’t specify what that “something” was.  What could it be and how can avoid my dog from the being the “house mop”?

Cheyenne Winslow
South Africa

animal behavior compulsive licking
Why would a dog compulsively lick the floor?

Dear Cheyenne,

Your Dachshund could very well have something lacking in his diet and perhaps you could check with your vet to see if the food your are feeding is the correct food for your dog. You vet could also do a stool sample test to see if he is digesting his food and to check for worms.
However, it is possibly a behavioral problem. What started out as maybe something fell on the floor and it tasted nice to lick up, which is quite possible on a carpet, or the floor cleaner is tasty, this can have now turned into an obsessive compulsive disorder. Shouting and smacking certainly WILL NOT solve the problem. Dogs want attention from their owners, and even shouting will give the dog that attention. In fact, what you should be doing is IGNORING the dog when it is licking. Walk out the room, slam the door, so that the dog learns that when it is licking, it looses you.   You can also, without the dog seeing you, “Spritz” him with a short jet of water from a water bottle. This will distract him, and as soon as he is distracted, call him away and get him to do something else.
Finally, if there are specific spots, put bitter aloe on the spots (Avert from the Vet) so that when he does lick the area, it will not taste nice. What he is doing will punish him, and not you, the owner.
diverting animal's attention from licking to something else
Divert his attention – give him a chew toy for instance


Kathy Clayton
Accredited Companion Animal Behaviourist &Professional Dog Trainer
011 783 3042   082 454 1750

Leave a Reply