If you’ve ever caught your male dog engaging in the curious act of licking your female dog’s privates, you might be wondering the reason behind this behavior.
So, what causes a male dog to lick a female dog’s privates?
Let’s look at the reasons behind a male dog licking a female dog’s privates and what you can do about it.
Why is my male dog licking my female dog's privates?
A male dog licks a female dog’s privates as a mating behavior for sensing hormonal changes in her, scent identification, grooming instincts, and establishment to their social bond and sensing of a medical problem on the female. The behavior is normal dog social behavior which occurs when they are sterized or not.
Reasons a male dog licks a female dog’s privates
Sensing of hormonal changes
During the reproductive cycle, female dogs experience hormonal fluctuations particularly when they are in heat and release pheromones that can attract male dogs to her in order to mate.
Male dogs possess an extraordinary sense of smell and can detect the pheromones. Their licking behavior is an instinctive response to the female dog’s scent, indicating their readiness for mating.
Dogs explore their environment through various means, including sniffing and licking. When a male dog licks a female dog’s privates, it may be driven by simple curiosity to investigate unfamiliar scents or secretions.
A male dog may also lick a female dog’s privates as part of their natural grooming instinct. Licking helps to clean the fur and remove dirt, debris, or any unpleasant odors.
Grooming behavior in dogs is often reciprocated, meaning that the female dog may also groom the male dog in return.
This mutual grooming can reinforce social bonding and trust between dogs, and help them establish and maintain their hierarchy and roles within a pack.
Social bonding and affection
A male dog may lick a female dog’s privates to establish and strengthen social bonds. Just like humans hug or kiss to show affection, dogs use licking as their equivalent gesture.
Licking is a common form of communication and a way for dogs to express their affection and care for one another.
Scent of a medical problem
A male dog licking a female dog’s privates would not be to specifically target a medical problem, however, dogs are use their sense of smell to gather information about other dogs.
They may pick up on changes in scent or behavior that could indicate an underlying health issue.
For example, if a female dog has an infection or an abnormal odor coming from their privates, the male dog may be drawn to that scent and show interest or lick the affected area.
A dog licking another dog’s ears is not a reliable indicator of a specific medical problem, but it is still important to pay attention to any changes in your female dog’s behavior or health and seek veterinary attention when needed.
What to do when my male dog is licking my female dog’s privates
Monitor the behavior
Carefully observe your dogs’ behavior and interaction. Observe their body language, overall behavior, and any signs of discomfort or distress.
If your male dog licks briefly and your female dog is friendly and doesn’t seem to mind, that is normal, social behavior.
However, if your male dog insists on licking and starts looking like an obsessive licking, or if the female dog seems bothered or stressed by the licking, address the situation and intervene.
Separate the dogs
If the licking behavior becomes persistent, intrusive, or uncomfortable for the female dog, consider separating them temporarily.
This can help provide a break and prevent any potential escalation of the behavior.
Offer toys, treats, or engage the dogs in a different activity to redirect their attention away from the licking behavior.
Consult your veterinarian
Talk to your veterinarian or a certified dog behaviorist for guidance. They can evaluate the specific behavior and provide recommendations based on their expertise.
They may want to observe your dogs’ interactions directly or ask you for more details to better understand the situation.
If the licking behavior is linked to underlying issues, they will help you develop a plan to address those concerns.
This might involve training, behavior modification techniques, or medical interventions if necessary.
While occasional licking between dogs is normal, it is important to monitor their behavior and ensure the well-being of both your male and female dogs.
Seek veterinary advice if the licking becomes excessive or if your female dog seems bothered or stressed by the licking.