How can I get my dog to stop licking my earlobes?

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While you may interpret your dog’s licking to be an annoyance, chances are that your dog views the licking as a means to show affection and acceptance. Dogs often lick their owners on the hands, face or earlobes to communicate a message of love. Dogs learn from an early age from their mothers and their littermates that licking and grooming is an acceptable way to clean, show affection and bond with one another.

However, as cute as the licking might be, you may need to curb your dog’s desire to lick your earlobes, if it is getting out of hand. Teach your dog that licking is not an acceptable behavior by adamantly repeating, “no!” each time your dog tries to lick your earlobes. If your dog still tries to lick your earlobes, turn its attention to something else, like a favorite toy.

Some dog owners also use clickers and clicker training techniques to teach which behaviors are acceptable and which are not. It’s up to the owner to choose the training method that will work best for their dog. Never make licking a game by encouraging the act, and be consistent with whatever training method you use to stop the licking habit.

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