Top 3 Reasons Why Dogs Lick Blankets and Pillows
A number of reasons could explain a dog that likes to lick the blanket and pillow. Whether it’s normal or a behavior of concern would depend on the context and how often the dog licks. Here are some common reasons to consider.
1. It’s a self-soothing behavior
Some dogs may like to relax and soothe themselves before they go to sleep. Licking is an interesting mechanism. Researchers have found that licking can help release endorphins in the dog’s brain. Endorphins help promote relaxation and a sense of calm. It may build even more calmness for dogs if the blanket has your scent. Dogs may lick the blanket and pillow more often if it hasn’t been freshly washed recently.
2. Your dog is sick or hurt
Some dogs may lick objects, such as blankets and pillows, they usually wouldn’t lick if they are in pain. For example, dogs with joint pains may lick blankets as they lie down to get some sleep. The movement of lying down may cause temporary discomfort. As explained earlier, licking may help provide relief to dogs.
3. Dog is marking his territory
Licking is one of many ways a dog might mark their territory. The dogs could be licking the blanket and pillow to claim the area as theirs. They may also do this in other ways such as by scratching and digging at the blanket.
How to stop a dog from licking pillows and blankets
It could be a bit frustrating for you if the dog is licking the blankets until there is a large wet patch. This makes it difficult for you to sleep. The occasional lick isn’t of any harm but excessive licking needs to be rectified.
First, make sure your dog isn’t sick or having any issues in regard to stress and anxiety. Next, train your dog to lick an alternative object. This could be an old blanket your dog can lick as he pleases. In some cases, it might be necessary to train your dog to sleep in his own bed.