Why Does My Dog Lick My Pillow?

Why Do Dogs Lick Pillows?

Licking is a natural behavior for canines. Some experts even say that it’s a way for dogs to communicate what they’re thinking with others.

Dog saliva contains amino acids, which have a variety of functions including antibacterial ones. So, when your furry friend licks their paws or your pillow, one thing they may be doing is cleaning and protecting their surroundings.

Here are some other reasons why dogs lick pillows:

1 . It’s a sign of affection.

Dogs are pack animals, so they like to show love through physical expressions such as licking. Your pooch might be trying to let you know that he loves you! This may seem strange, but without arms and hands, dogs often show affection by licking.

2 . They’re trying to show leadership.

It can also be seen as a sign of dominance or authority. When dogs lick pillows, they are acting like the pack leader in an attempt to gain control over their pack. They are signaling to you and any other dogs that the item they are licking is “theirs.”

3 . They want your attention.

They might be seeking some quality time with you by showing you how much they love you. You could try petting them or playing with them to show your doggy that you love him back. This will often get them to stop licking your pillow and redirect their attention somewhere you would rather they spend it.

4 . It’s a sign of submission.

When dogs lick pillows, they are trying to make themselves seem smaller and less threatening. This behavior is common among dogs as they will lick other dogs to show submissive behavior. A dog will also lick pillows or their owners as a way of asking for forgiveness after they’ve done something wrong, or to try to make themselves seem less dangerous.

5 . They’re stressed out.

When dogs lick your pillow, they may be showing signs of stress or anxiety. If you’ve witnessed this behavior, it might be a good time to schedule a visit to the vet to check if anything is wrong and if there is anything you can do. This behavior is usually only a problem if you can’t redirect your dog and get him to stop licking your pillow.

6 . They miss you.

When your pooch can’t be with you, licking your pillow might be a sign that he misses you and wants to spend more time with you. A new twist on this idea is that some say dogs see their owners as their “pack” and licking your pillow connects them to you when you’re gone.

7 . They’re bored.

Dogs that lick pillows when left alone are often saying that they’re bored or lonely. You might be able to solve this by giving your dog more opportunities to play when you’re gone such as leaving toys or treats for them to pass the time. Licking activates their senses and salivary glands, so it can often be that they’re just passing the time with an interesting activity until you get home.

8 . They want attention from other dogs.

If they are licking your pillow while you’re around, it’s possible that they want the attention of another dog. They’re basically doing something that they know the other dog will be interested in and licking your pillow is a way to get the second dog to come over to them.

9 . They’re trying to clean and protect themselves.

Licking itself is a natural behavior for canines and is meant for cleaning purposes. When they lick pillows, dogs are protecting themselves from dirt and other impurities. In the wild this can also remove their scent from the area so that predators can find them. It also gets rid of any other scents that they want to try and get rid of such as their human’s scent. They’re protecting you, too!

10 . They’re trying to cool themselves down.

When dogs lick pillows, it’s a sign that they are trying to cool themselves down by transferring heat from their mouths to the object they’re licking. Try giving your four-legged friend a water dish or in the summertime, a small pool to swim in.


The next time your furry friend starts licking your pillow, try your best not to get annoyed at them. It might be that they are simply trying to show affection or clean up after themselves.

There is always an underlying reason behind why dogs lick pillows. From acting dominant to cleaning themselves, there are many reasons why dogs lick pillows.