Why Is Your Dog Licking The Couch? 4 General Reasons

Why Is Your Dog Licking The Couch? 4 General Reasons

Author WDF Staff | Last updated: Jul 16 2023


Dogs like to lick…that is nothing strange. They lick their feet, owners' faces, and other dogs, but did you catch your dog licking the couch? At first, this may seem like strange behavior, but licking furniture can be a sign of a health problem for your dog. So if you catch your dog licking the couch, bed, or pillows, take action and find out what is bothering your dog.

Why does my dog lick the couch?

Every dog is different, and so are the reasons why they exhibit this dog behavior. If you catch your dog licking the couch, you need to find a reason why your dog does it to help him and stop this behavior. Here are some possible reasons why your dog would start to lick the couch:

1. Dog likes the taste

The first an most simple reason why dogs lick couch is because they like the taste. A sofa is where many people will sit, eat snacks, etc., and maybe your dog has sniffed some food on it and started licking. Also, dogs like to sniff different odors; perhaps the couch has your body odor. If this is the reason why your dog does it, you need to keep your couch clean and without any food leftovers.

RELATED: Why Do Dogs Lick?

2. Boredom

How much of your time do you devote to dog training? No matter what breed you have, dogs require proper mental and physical exercise. If you don't allow your dog to spend his energy, he will become bored and do different forbidden stuff – including couch licking.

chihuahua on couch

If this is the main reason your dog does it, you need to provide more exercise for your dog, so he can be satisfied. If your dog needs to spend much of his time alone at the house, get some interactive dog toys to help him with boredom.

RELATED: 6 Reasons Why Does My Dog Lick My Hands

3. Health issue

Dogs are known to exhibit some strange behaviors, and for most, health problems can be a reason. The same thing applies to licking the couch. If your dog does it, they will try to communicate that they are hurt or that something is wrong with them.

You will have to check with your vet if you cannot find any reasonable reason why your dog does it. Explain to him what is happening, and your vet can assist you further. Maybe the vet will need to do a quick physical exam of your dog to try and figure out what is bothering your dog.

4. Anxiety and stress

Separation anxiety and stress can also be reasons why your dog starts to lick the couch. Did something change in your dog's life recently? Did you move to a new place, or did you bring home a new pet? This could all trigger anxiety and stress for your dog, and to ease his mental pain, he will do stuff like licking the couch.

french bulldog on couch

If anxiety and stress are causing licking, the licking should stop eventually because this is a dog's response to occasional stress. Still, if the problem and licking persist longer, you need to seek vet help.

RELATED: Why Does My Dog Lick My Face? Should I Allow It?

How can I prevent my dog from licking the couch?

As you may think, all "bad" dog behaviors can be solved if you have the will and time. During this process, you should use positive reinforcement methods (including a lot of praise and treats) and never use punishment on your dog. Yelling or possibly hitting your dog will not get you far; in most cases, you will only worsen the situation. We bring you the 4 best methods how to stop your dog from licking the couch:

1. Don't encourage licking

If your dog starts to lick the couch, you should immediately stop this behavior. The general dog command "stop" will help you in this case. To get your dog to cooperate, use treats and praises. Over time they will learn that licking the couch is not desirable behavior, and they will stop doing it.

2. Bitter spray

Some dog owners reported using bitter spray to keep a dog away from the couch. This spray is 100% non-toxic, safe, and effective, and you can try it. Many owners have stated that their dogs stopped licking the couch after they used this spray. Here is our recommendation – Bitter lemon dog spray.

3. Exercise your dog

You can stop this dog behavior by providing regular exercise to your dog. Most dogs start licking because they are bored and they have unused accumulated energy. If you tire your dog, he will be happy and satisfied and will not lick your couch.


RELATED: How Much Exercise Does a Dog Need in a Day

4. Consult with your vet

If you think that some medical reason is behind this behavior, you should contact your vet and ask for advice. For some dogs, health problems can be the main reason your dog starts to lick the couch. Your vet will instruct you on your next move in treating this problem.


If your dog starts to lick the couch, you should stop this behavior as soon as possible. First, you need to find a good reason why your dog does it, so you can address the problem and find the right solution. Keeping them active during the day will do the trick, and stop couch licking for most dogs.

World Dog Finder team

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