[9 Reasons] Why Does My Dog Lick Himself After a Bath?

Are you curious about why your dog licks himself after a bath? As responsible pet owners, we strive to keep our dogs healthy. Let’s explore the reasons behind this behavior.

There are several reasons why a dog may lick himself after a bath. It could be because he needs to dry off, the scent of the shampoo bothers him, he had a bad day, it’s just his nature, he’s trying to heal a wound, he’s bored, he enjoys water, he’s experiencing pleasure, or he’s dealing with skin problems such as sores, hair loss, rashes, lumps, redness, bumps, or dandruff.

However, understanding why your dog is licking himself cannot be determined by simply observing the above facts. As a dog owner, there is much more to learn about this behavior. Let’s delve deeper into the topic and gain a comprehensive understanding of why dogs lick themselves.

The reason why your dog licks/cleans himself after a bath

Dogs are amazing animals. They can close us like more than a pet. When times come, they become part of our family. This is a famous secret that we can’t live without them too. As a result, we try to care for him/her more.

That’s why you feel bad when he/she does kinda odd things.

This problem is the same. If you see them unusually lick themselves, keep reading this. In the end, you will understand how and why they lick themselves and how to avoid it. Without delay, let’s move on to the favorite dish.

9 reasons why your dog licks/cleanses himself after a bath

  1. Because they wanna dry
  2. Scented of shampoo
  3. Having a bad day
  4. Because it is their nature
  5. Skin problem
  6. Boredom
  7. Because they like water
  8. Pleasures
  9. For healing.

1. Because they wanna dry

Most dogs don’t like baths because getting wet is very unusual. That’s why dogs are weak in bathing daily. But some dogs are looking forward to bathing on time.

After we consider both of them, the common thing is licking. They like to keep their hair dry. As a result, they are getting used to licking themselves after a bath. Do not get excited. That is such a natural condition.

Recommonded reading: 5 reasons why does my dog sleep after a bath? [Vet advice]

2. Scented of shampoo

When people make dog shampoos, they add to the dog’s favorite fragrance because it improves their bath. On this occasion, the dog will love that fragrance.

As a result, they start to lick themselves. Therefore when you buy shampoo, choose quality and safe products because they should not be harmful to the dog.

3. Having a bad day

Dogs also have bad days like us. It sometimes means both mentally and physically, we fall. Dogs are the same. After they had to face an unexpected incident, they become nervous. That’s why they lick themselves.

4. Because that’s their nature

Normally dogs love to lick themselves after a bath because of their ordinary condition. That talent comes from genetics. So sometimes you can do nothing about that. You should leave it out of your mind. That’s the best thing.

For instance, Chiweenies prefer to lick so much throughout the day.

5. Skin problem

What kinda skin problems do dogs have

  • Skin Sores
  • Hair Loss
  • Belly rash
  • Dry Skin
  • Rashes
  • Lumps
  • Red spot
  • Redness
  • Dandruff
  • Bumps

The above infections are the most popular skin problems. If your dog has any of this, they may lick after a bath. What you have to do is keep an eye on your dog. Try to make a difference.

6. Boredom

If they feel lazy or comfortable after a bath, they are getting used to licking themselves.

Under this circumstance, you should not be worried. I had a girly golden retriever before, and she was committed to licking herself continuously.

I was very afraid of this odd behavior, but it would become a regular thing in time to come. No harm at all. One of the most important things is, you should not stop your dog at that time. Let her release her boredom.

7. Because they like water

I wonder why some dogs love water that much. My dog tries to jump In the water the very first moment he sees. And he doesn’t care where he is.

As I said before, dogs lick themselves if they like water. They enjoy watching the way water dances.

 8. Pleasure

After bathing, dogs feel so fresh and comfortable. They run here and there, jump, dance and licking too. Sometimes they lay down in the yard. That’s how they feel happy.

During that time, licking is one of the main facts. If you look carefully, you will see how much they enjoy licking themselves. Maybe they feel thirsty too. Yes, they can feel thirsty during his/her bath time.

 9. For healing.

Examine if the dog has a wound on the place where it licks the most.

Wound licking is an instinct that dogs have with them and it makes them feel relief.

By the way, read this if your dog’s licking sound annoys you.

Should you not allow your dog to lick after bathing?

Now you already know that licking is a normal requirement. But there are some incidents which we should consider before we let our dogs lick themselves.

In this session, I’mma clarifies the reasons for the above statement. In simple terms, if anyone doesn’t get the above facts, I’mma answers directly.

It is DEPEND. I am telling this because there are several times and hangs on the situation your dog is in.

On what occasion shouldn’t let your dog lick themselves? If they have allergies, skin problems, hair loss problems, and suffering from the above sicknesses, we should not let our dogs lick themselves.

And also, we usually apply some medical shampoo, oils, and liquids when dogs are infected by chigoes. At a time like that, the above things might be harmful to your dogs.

In that context, you have to stop your dog from licking.

When your dog licks itself after a bath, the risk of spreading infection can increase. So you should keep an eye on your dog. This is as easy as ABC.

If your dog is super healthy, do not be a worry about avoiding its licking behavior. Because it is a part of their life and you have to understand it clearly.

Suggested Reading: Why do some dogs chew or lick their paws after grooming?

What should you do after bathing your dog?

from my perspective, the majority of dogs like to skip their bath time. Whatever it may be, bathing has done a great job of increasing your dog’s health. Is that enough?

As dog owners, do you do your part well? Anyway, do you know what you should do after bathing your dog? If the answer is NO, keep reading.

I’m express brief answers at first

You can give a massage, put on some oil or moisturize, reward your dog for good behavior, comb your dog’s hair, dry using an air dryer or a towel and let them go into the sunlight.

1. Dry using an air dryer or  a towel

As soon as you finish bathing, all you have to do is dry your dog. Because they are furious when their body gets wet. So you have two options

  • You can use an air dryer.
  • You can use a comfortable towel.

2. Give a massage

This is an amiable treatment. It’s not bad if you can give a massage to your dog when you have enough time.

It will be suitable for your dog’s both mental and physical stimulation. And they don’t wanna lick themselves anymore.

3. Put some oil or moisturise

This is an extra treat for your dog’s hair and skin. If he/she has some kinda skin problem or allergies, this will be the best therapy.

4. Comb hair

This is an essential part of bathing. We should not mention this here because everyone knows the importance of combing hair after a bath, and we do it as a duty.

5. Reward

This is a good strategy for adapting your dog to bath without any difficulty.

You can say ‘good boy’, ‘good job’ or whatever you want after the bathing. Then your dog will understand how to behave during bathing time. On the other hand, you can give dog treats too if you want.

6. Sunlight

Let your dog be exposed to sunlight. You will see how enjoyable they are. Your dog will run here and there continuously.

They will forget licking themselves too. Nature is good medicine for everyone.

If you keep your dog in a dark place after bathing, there is a risk of having skin problems. So keep them dry.

What should you not do after bathing?

Bathing your dog is not a kinda duty for you. It is a responsibility which a good owner does for his/her lovely pooch.

When you do a duty, you will be able to make some mistakes, but when you accomplish responsibilities, you should not make mistakes. Keep it in mind.

Let’s see the things briefly

You should not use dirty combs for combing dog’s hair and keep them in the darkroom, use too hot air dryers, let them run outside, jump on beds and chairs, eat shampoo, and lay on sand or soil.

1. Use dirty combs.

When you are going to brush your dog or comb him/her, check whether brushes and combs are clean or not. When you use dirty things, it will be harmful to your dog’s hair and skin. It can spread infections.

2. Don’t keep your dog in the darkroom after bath

Your dog needs sunlight. Take him/her outside and let them feel it. Air and sunlight can dry them too. It is not harmful at all.

3. Don’t increase the volume of the dryer

You have to keep a monotonous heat level because a dog’s skin is so sensitive. Most probably, their skin can burn when you raise the volume of the dryer.

4. Do not let them run outside

Most of the dogs become too aggressive after bathing, and they will try to run fast, far away from home. That is a dangerous condition because they can be in threat.

So what I am gonna suggest is to keep your dog under your control

5. They will jump on beds and chairs

Like I said before, you have to keep your dog under your rule. Unless they will jump on your bed or sofa because they become more playful after bathing. Don’t forget.

6. Eat shampoo

Because of the good fragrance of shampoo and oils, dogs are fond of eating them. Anyhow, you have to prevent your dog from doing that kinda silly thing.

Things to be aware of

  1. Punish

Like I said before, licking themselves is not a bad habit or an odd thing for the dogs. Some people are getting used to punishing their dogs when dogs do not obey them.

Because of your harsh behavior, the bond between you and your dog will break. Is that the thing you wanna happen?

  1. Use hot water

When you bathe your dog, you should consider the water you use.  Because too warm water can damage your dog’s skin. This is one of the reasons for licking themselves.

They might burn because of hot water. Therefore, you have to be a bit extra careful when you heat water.

  1. Cool water

Cool water can make your dog sick. It helps to spread skin problems your dog has. The water temperature should become 37 degrees Celsius.

  1. Brush roughly

During bathing, most people get used to brushing their dogs. Do you use quality and safe brushes? Unless your dog’s skin will bruise. In this context, your dog will start licking themselves because of the pain.

  1. Give toys

If you are a canine owner who doesn’t like to watch your dog’s licking behavior, this is a good strategy you can use. While your dog is bathing, put his/her favorite toys beside him/her.

And then his/her attention will go towards the toys. Under that circumstance, your dog will forget about licking themselves.


Cleanliness is the most crucial thing if you are going to raise a dog or you already have one. No matter who you are, you are the person who has all the responsibility for your dog. After you bathe your dog, if he/she licks it, you might get excited. But long-time dog owners know the theory. Mostly this problem is running around first-time owners. So I have solved all the matters you deal with. What you have to do is be positive and do not get excited. Everything has a solution; if you follow my instructions, you will be able to catch your dreams soon. Have a nice journey.


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