Why Do Dogs Lick Your Feet?

why do dogs lick your feet
Photo by Sara Kurfeß

Why do dogs lick your feet? This is a common question that constantly beats the minds of dog owners. Is it because they want attention or because they enjoy being around you? You might not know for sure till you read this article.

Dogs love to play with their owners and love to cuddle and snuggle. So, they start licking your feet if you don’t give them enough affection; this behavior is called foot-licking. In return, you should gently pet them and let them know you care.

Foot licking is common among puppies, but excessive licking could indicate serious health problems. It also happens after they learn to walk independently.

When they see their owner walking away from them, they will follow behind to keep up with her. Let us thoroughly discuss the reasons why dogs lick feet in this post.

Why Do Dogs Lick Your Feet?

They Want Attention

If your puppy starts licking your feet, then there is no doubt that he wants some attention. He may be lonely and needs someone to talk to. If you have an older dog, then he probably misses his family and friends.

The best way to keep your dog from licking your feet is by giving him something else to do. For example, if you have a small dog, you should provide him with toys so he can play with them instead of lapping at your feet. This method will help him to stay busy and distracted.

They Need to Cuddle and Snuggle

Another reason why dogs lick your feet is that they need to cuddle and snuggles. They like to feel warm and loved, especially when they are cold. It is also a sign of affection.

So, whenever you notice your dog licking your feet, pet him and tell him how much you appreciate him. Also, try to spend more time with him so he can get used to having you near.

It’s a Compulsive Behavior

Some people think that foot licking is just a normal thing for dogs to do, but it is compulsive behavior. It is a habit that they cannot control.

When they are young, they usually stop doing it as soon as they reach adulthood. However, if they continue to lick your feet even though you told them to stop, they suffer from separation anxiety.

Separation anxiety is a severe condition that requires professional treatment. So, if you suspect your dog has separation anxiety, you should take him to a vet immediately.

It’s an Exercise

You might wonder why your dog would lick your feet if he is already active. Well, it is a form of exercise. Your dog uses his tongue to clean his paws and remove dirt and debris. He gets rid of dead skin cells and bacteria by licking your feet.

Your Feet Tastes of Salt

If you’re sweaty, it’s normal for your feet to taste salty. So, if your dog has licked your feet for some reason and noticed this taste of salt, they might keep coming back.

You should not worry about it too much because it is only temporary. But, if you find out that your dog keeps licking your feet every day, you should consult a veterinarian.

They Are Fascinated By the Smell of Your Feet

Dogs are curious creatures with a strong sense of smell. Your dog must have perceived your feet from afar and loved how they smell. He might want to sniff your feet all over again. He might start licking your feet right away. 

Should You Encourage This Behavior?

You might wonder, ‘should I encourage my dog’s foot-licking behavior?’ Well, your answer depends on why they’re doing it. You should encourage them if they are trying to show their love and affection towards you.

However, if the licking is excessive, you should stop them. And if they stop, you should give them positive reinforcement such as praise or treats.


Foot licking is typical behavior among dogs. If you see your dog licking your feet, you should discover its cause. Hopefully, these tips will help you understand the issue better.

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