Licking

beccapNovember 9, 2009

My Jack Russell is 7 years old. She constantly licks whatever she is laying on before going to sleep. She licks on her bed, her favorite chair even my bed. She does not chew, just licks. How can I get her to stop licking where I don't want her to. Do any of the sprays work?

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sylviatexas1

sounds like a nervous habit;

maybe some rescue remedy or some such?

    Bookmark   November 9, 2009 at 9:55PM
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mazer415

beccap, is this the only time she licks? And if so, how long does the licking go on for??? A couple of minutes, ten minutes, half an hour??
It sounds like an obsessive compulsive behavior and she finds it comforting.
Is she getting enough outside time? Enough walkies? Enough attention? Enough stimulation ie- stupid dog tricks?
If she is doing it ONLY just before bedtime and for less than a minute, I would let the behavior go. If it is done more often or for longer then we need to deal with it.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2009 at 4:17PM
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beccap

This is the only time she licks. It can last as long as 15 - 20 minutes. I agree with the obsessive compulsive behavior and I do think it is a comforting action to her. She seems very content when she does it. She gets lots of outside time with us, without us and with and without our two other dogs. As far as attention, my dogs get lots of attention and stimulation. We play with them, talk to them, walk them, and just hold and pet them. Almost everyone I know says they would love to be a dog and live at my house. I just want her to stop licking certain places like her favorite chair and my bed. I don't care if she licks her bed or her blanket. The actual licking does not bother me just the wet spots. By the way she does not lick anything that does not have a texture to it. She does not lick the leather furniture or floors. One more thing. she does have very mild seizures. They occur about 4 times a year. We have had her since she was 6 weeks old.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2009 at 12:38PM
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mazer415

It sounds like she has enough stimultion, so next round of questions. When did she start this behavior (HOW OLD WAS SHE)and is it getting more intense? Is she taking any meds for the seizures if so how often?

    Bookmark   November 11, 2009 at 10:11PM
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beccap

I really began to notice it about two years ago when we got the chair that she licks. Before, we had a leather chair in that spot and she did not lick it. (Maybe I should have kept the leather chair) This is what makes me think it has something to do with the texture. It is not getting more intense and she does not take any meds for the seizures because they are so mild and so infrequent. She has had blood work done to try to find the cause of the seizures and it was all normal. She is not overweight and really is a very happy dog. My dogs are on a strict diet (only their food in measured amounts and NO table scraps) Thanks for your concern.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 10:20AM
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mazer415

Great that information gives me a better idea of her state of mind and mood.
You can go on Ebay and get yourself a piece of leather to put on the chair or anywhere else you dont want her licking. If you dont care about the bed where she is licking then just diesuading her from licking on the bed and chair is going to be harder, since most dogs NEED absolute consistency and follow through in order for training to work. So if you want to eliminate the behavior, everyone is the household (of the people persuasion) should be on the same page. The second she starts licking - correct her. Tell her NO, Leave it and pick her up and place her on the ground. Do this each and every time she licks. Since she associates the chair, and bed with comfort and she is intensifiying her feelings of comfort, the easiest way to train her is to physically remove her form that which she is finding comfortable. If she sits in the chair without licking, praise her and give her a little treat (I recommend Natural Balance meat sticks - low in fat, low in sugars, human grade meat etc - and you can give her small diced pieces) But the micro second she starts to lick you must remove her and just a light reprimand should do it. You must be consistant with the correction. If you are not going to be in the house you will need something as a replacement for the correction, either a piece of foil, leather, cardboard boxes - whatever works, Whatever you choose should be something your dog can not move aside in order to avoid. Pleas let me know how it goes.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2009 at 8:30PM
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beccap

Mazer - Thanks for all the suggestions. I started this past Friday eliminating the behavior. It is going great. She really is smart and learns fast - she is just soooooo stubborn. She does not have access to any of her licking "spots" while we are not around. Just a few no's and "the look" was all it took. She is still seeing just how much she can get by with. It is almost comical, sometimes when I look at her she sticks out her tongue briefly and then grins. You said everyone in the household (of people persuasion) should be on the same page. Well my poodle has joined the effort also. When Butterscotch starts to lick, Molly makes sure someone knows. She is such a tattletale. Thanks for your help.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2009 at 11:14AM
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pamghatten

beccap, you made me laugh! I love dogs, they are so smart and so funny!

    Bookmark   November 19, 2009 at 12:50PM
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