Why Do Bichon Frise Lick so Much? What can You do About it?

Why Do Bichon Frise Lick so Much?

Bichon Frise is a delightful breed known for its affectionate nature and playful personality. One common behavior observed in Bichon Frises is their tendency to lick, which can occur quite frequently. Owners are always curious “Why do Bichon Frise lick so much?”

Bichon Frises often engage in licking behavior due to reasons like boredom, allergies, matting, showing affection, or just wanting attention. This adorable breed may lick themselves as a form of self-soothing or to maintain their hygiene. Understanding the underlying causes of excessive licking is crucial in order to address this behavior effectively. If your Bichon Frise is licking excessively, it is important to evaluate their lifestyle and environment.

As per owners, before getting one they are always curious why Bichon Lick so much, which might also lead them to think, “Do Bichon Frise like to cuddle,” “Why are Bichon Frise so needy,” and “do bichon frise bite”.

Why Does My Bichon Frise Lick So Much?

If you find that your Bichon Frise licks a lot, whether it’s licking you, themselves, your furniture, or something else, it’s natural to wonder why they engage in this behavior.

Understanding the reasons behind excessive licking in Bichon Frises is important for their well-being and your peace of mind. While each dog may have unique motivations, there are a couple of different reasons why Bichon Frises exhibit this behavior.

Here are some possibilities to consider:

Licking Themselves

Bichon Frise dogs may exhibit a tendency to lick themselves, which can be a natural behavior for various reasons. It is important for owners to understand the underlying causes and implications of excessive licking.

One common observation is that the fur in the areas where they lick tends to become discolored and matted. This could be a result of saliva staining the fur and continuous licking, causing tangles and mats to form.

However, it is crucial to address this behavior with care and consideration. Licking themselves excessively can be a sign of discomfort, allergies, skin irritations, or even boredom.

By closely monitoring their licking behavior and consulting a veterinarian if necessary, owners can identify any underlying health issues and provide appropriate solutions.

Implementing strategies such as providing mental stimulation, ensuring a balanced diet, and addressing any potential allergies. They can help alleviate the excessive licking and maintain the health and well-being of Bichon Frise dogs.

Cleanliness and Boredom

Bichon Frises are known for their fastidious nature and have a natural inclination to groom themselves. It is not surprising that these dogs may frequently lick themselves to maintain cleanliness. The act of licking is a normal behavior for dogs and serves as a way for them to groom and keep their fur clean.

In some cases, however, dogs may engage in excessive licking out of boredom, even after they have sufficiently cleaned themselves. This behavior is often observed when Bichon Frises are in downtime, such as when they are relaxing on the sofa. The act of licking becomes a way for them to occupy their time and alleviate boredom.

To prevent excessive grooming due to boredom, it is advisable to provide alternative activities that can help relieve their restlessness. One effective solution is to offer food-distributing toys and chew toys. These engaging toys can divert their attention and provide mental stimulation, effectively reducing their inclination to lick excessively.

In addition to toys, some Bichon Frises may find comfort in licking a stuffed toy or engaging with other objects. It is crucial, however, to ensure that the materials they lick are safe and non-toxic, as ingestion of inappropriate substances can pose health risks. As responsible pet owners, it is important to supervise their behavior and make sure they do not ingest any harmful material.


Bichon Frises, a breed of dog known for their playful and friendly nature, are generally not prone to allergies. However, like any dog, they can be susceptible to various types of allergies if you notice your Bichon excessively licking or chewing on its paws or the base of its tail. It may indicate that they are suffering from allergies. Identifying and addressing the underlying cause of these allergies is crucial for their well-being.

 Bichon Frise Allergies

One common culprit of allergies in dogs, including Bichon Frises, is flea allergies. Ensuring regular flea prevention measures for your furry companion can significantly reduce the risk of such allergies. Flea allergies are among the most prevalent types of allergies that can affect breeds like Bichon Frises.

If you observe persistent allergic symptoms in your Bichon, it is advisable to consult a veterinarian. A qualified veterinarian can help rule out potential environmental or food allergies that might be triggering your dog’s symptoms. With their expertise, they can provide guidance on proper diagnosis and treatment options.

In some cases, treating your Bichon’s allergies may involve the use of antihistamines. Benadryl, a commonly recommended antihistamine, can help alleviate symptoms and provide comfort to your furry friend. However, it is crucial to work closely with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate dosage and ensure the safety and effectiveness of the treatment.


Matting is a common concern among Bichon Frise owners due to the nature of their coats. The Bichon Frise has a unique, cottony fur that is nearly hypoallergenic and does not shed much. However, this beautiful coat comes with a trade-off – it is one of the more challenging coats in the dog world to maintain.

The lush, cottony fur of the Bichon Frise has a tendency to mat up easily, even after being brushed. This means that regular brushing is essential to prevent matting.

Wet fur is particularly prone to matting, making it even more crucial to take precautions when the fur gets damp. Paying special attention to the paws is important, as the hair between the pads is highly susceptible to matting.

Neglecting proper grooming can lead to serious consequences for your Bichon Frise. As the fur mats, it tends to collect moisture and debris in the paw pads, creating an environment where yeast and other infections can develop. Therefore, it is crucial to brush your dog regularly and ensure they are blow-dried whenever they get wet.

While you may not need to brush your entire dog every day, it is highly recommended to focus on brushing the paws daily to avoid matting. This becomes especially important if your dog frequently walks in moist areas, such as dew-covered morning grass.

Bichon Frise is Showing Affection

When your Bichon Frise licks you, it is a heartwarming display of affection, reinforcing the strong bond between you and your furry companion. Dogs, including the lovable Bichon Frise breed, express their love and care through this endearing gesture.

This common behavior often leaves owners wondering why their dogs engage in such behavior. One of the primary reasons behind these affectionate licks is the deep-rooted instinct inherited from their puppyhood.

Why Do Bichon Frise Lick so Much?

Similar to how mothers lick their puppies to demonstrate love and affection, Bichon Frises learn that licking is an effective way to communicate their adoration for their human companions.

It is a learned behavior that stems from their early development as they observe and mimic the nurturing actions of their mothers. Your Bichon Frise’s licks, therefore, serve as a heartfelt reminder of the love they have grown to associate with this gesture.

Additionally, when your Bichon Frise licks you, it may also be an attempt to groom you. Grooming is a natural form of care and affection within the canine world.

By gently licking you, your Bichon Frise is expressing their desire to ensure your well-being and cleanliness, as if they were grooming their fellow pack members. This nurturing behavior further strengthens the bond between you, showcasing their deep affection and concern for your welfare.

Bichon Frise is Submitting to You

Your Bichon Frise is a charming and affectionate breed known for its propensity to lick. When your Bichon Frise licks your face, it is a display of submission and a way to acknowledge your dominance over them. This behavior is deeply rooted in their instinct as pack creatures.

Being social animals, Bichon Frises greet members of their pack with a wet lick on the face. This action is accompanied by a slightly lower body position, emphasizing their recognition of you as the pack leader. It is a gesture of respect and an attempt to appease you.

It is interesting to note that this submissive behavior extends beyond their interaction with humans. Your Bichon Frise may also exhibit this licking behavior towards other dogs or pets in your house if your Bichon Frise has chosen to be submissive to another animal’s dominance over them. They may greet them with a wet lick, mirroring their pack-oriented instincts.

Bichon Frise Wants your Attention

Bichon Frises are well-known for their companionship and their strong desire to be with their owners. These adorable dogs have a unique way of getting your attention, whether it’s through staring at you with their loving eyes, engaging you in playful activities, or simply being by your side throughout the day. While they may resort to behaviors like whining, barking, or licking to capture your focus, their approach is often subtle and endearing.

Licking is a common way for a Bichon Frise to communicate their needs and desires. When your furry companion licks you, it can be a sign that they want something from you. It could be as simple as expressing their affection and love, or it might indicate.

They’re hungry, need to use the bathroom, or are eager to engage in playtime. Understanding their body language and deciphering their subtle cues is crucial in meeting their needs effectively.

As responsible pet owners, it’s important to respond appropriately to our Bichon Frises’ attempts to seek our attention through licking. By gently patting their head, offering a cuddle, or speaking sweet and calming words to them, we reinforce their behavior and let them know that their communication has been successful. This positive reinforcement encourages them to continue using licking as a means of getting our attention.

However, if you find the licking behavior to be bothersome and wish to discourage it, ignoring them can be an effective approach. By withholding your response, you communicate that licking is not the desired method of seeking attention.

Consistency is key in this process, as your Bichon Frise will eventually learn that alternative behaviors are more effective in capturing your focus.

To truly understand our Bichon Frises and provide for their needs accordingly, it’s essential to work on developing our skills in reading their body language.

This will enable us to decode their subtle signals and establish a strong bond based on effective communication by investing time and effort into learning their unique language. We can ensure a harmonious and fulfilling relationship with our beloved Bichon Frises.

Bichon Frise is Stressed or Anxious

When your Bichon Frise is feeling stressed or anxious, it may exhibit various body language cues to communicate its emotional state. One such sign is “whale eyes,” where you can observe the white part of its eyes.

Additionally, its eyes may appear wide, and its ears and tail might be tucked. Another common behavior is lip-licking, which is a known sign of stress in dogs.

Why Do Bichon Frise Lick so Much?

To cope with these feelings, your Bichon Frise may engage in self-soothing behaviors, such as excessive licking. This action helps release chemicals in the brain called endorphins, which trigger positive feelings and help lower stress levels. Dogs often instinctively lick themselves as a way to calm down and find comfort.

Another coping mechanism your Bichon Frise might exhibit is curling up in a ball and going to sleep. This ritual helps them relax and can facilitate falling asleep more quickly.

This behavior is especially prominent in younger Bichon Frises, as it reminds them of the comforting feeling of being in their mother’s presence.

As a dog owner, it’s essential to recognize these signs of stress or anxiety in your Bichon Frise. By understanding their body language and coping mechanisms, you can provide the necessary support and create a calming environment for your furry companion.

What To Do If Your Bichon Is Licking You

Bichon owners often find themselves facing a common issue with their dogs: excessive licking. This behavior can be attributed to the deep love and affection that Bichons have for their owners.

These affectionate dogs have a long history, from their origins on islands to their presence on sailors’ ships and even their roles as loyal companions and circus performers. The admirable traits of the Bichon breed still hold true today, with their propensity for expressing love and loyalty through licking.

Understanding that licking is a natural expression of their affection, Bichon owners can take certain measures to address this behavior. One effective approach is to redirect their attention towards appropriate alternatives, such as providing them with a chewing toy.

Additionally, incorporating training commands and tricks can offer Bichons alternative ways to show their affection while minimizing excessive licking. This approach not only encourages a healthy bond but also provides an outlet for their need to express love and loyalty.

In some cases, excessive licking can be a sign of separation anxiety or an over-focus on their owners. To address this, it may be beneficial to use an all-natural and harmless bitter apple spray. Applying the spray to areas where the Bichon tends to lick, such as the leg or arm, can deter them from engaging in this behavior.

What If Your Bichon Is Licking Your Things?

Bichons have a natural inclination to lick various objects, including socks, undergarments, couches, and blankets. This behavior is often driven by their heightened sense of smell, particularly when items carry a strong scent from their owners. The act of licking can be soothing and relaxing for Bichons, making it a common behavior among them.

While finding soggy socks and undergarments may not be ideal for owners, it’s important to understand that this behavior is normal for Bichons. Some dogs may engage in fabric sucking or licking due to early separation from their mothers, while others may do it for no apparent reason. Training a Bichon to stop this behavior can be challenging, especially without removing the stimuli they are attracted to.

To address this issue, many owners find it easiest to keep personal items like socks and undergarments out of their Bichon’s reach. Additionally, teaching a command such as “Drop it” can be crucial in convincing the dog to relinquish items they shouldn’t have.

Another strategy is to use fabric-safe bitter apple spray, which can deter the dog from sucking on upholstery or blankets. Alternatively, providing an alternate toy for the Bichon to lick can redirect their attention away from personal belongings.

Is It Okay To Allow My Bichon To Lick?

Licking is a natural behavior for Bichon Frise dogs, and it serves various purposes. If your Bichon is licking something other than themselves and the behavior is not continuous, it is generally considered acceptable to allow them to keep doing it. This harmless behavior can be seen as a way for Bichons to explore their environment and show affection.

However, if your Bichon Frise is chronically licking themselves, especially if they are chewing and the skin appears irritated, it may indicate underlying causes such as allergies or infections.

In such cases, it is crucial to seek the advice of a veterinarian. The veterinarian will be able to assess the situation and rule out any potential health issues. They provide guidance on addressing licking behavior. Ignoring persistent licking could lead to more severe problems and potential damage to Bichon’s skin.

Understanding the reasons behind excessive licking is essential to ensure the well-being of your Bichon Frise. Allergies can cause discomfort and irritate the skin, prompting the dog to lick excessively.

Identifying and addressing these allergies through proper diagnosis and treatment can alleviate the need for constant licking. Similarly, infections can arise from excessive licking, as the saliva can introduce bacteria to the skin.

Seeking veterinary care will enable early detection and appropriate management of any infections, preventing further complications.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does my Bichon Frise lick so much?

If your Bichon Frise is licking excessively, it could be due to various reasons, such as boredom, anxiety, allergies, or even underlying health problems.

Why does my dog obsessively lick me?

If your dog obsessively licks you, it could be a result of various factors such as nervousness, stress, fear, or seeking comfort.

Why do bichons bite their paws?

Bichons may bite their paws due to various reasons, including allergies, skin infections, anxiety, stress, or boredom.

How often should you wash Bichon Frise?

To keep your Bichon Frise clean and well-groomed, it is recommended to follow a weekly bathing routine.

Final Thoughts

It is worth noting that while Bichon Frise’s licking habits can be concerning. They are typically not a cause for major concern. With proper training, patience, and understanding, this behavior can be managed and reduced.

Remember to be gentle with your Bichon Frise, as their sensitive nature requires a compassionate and empathetic approach.

By addressing their licking habits in a positive and supportive manner, you can ensure a harmonious relationship with your beloved furry companion.

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