If you’ve had your dog for a while, seeing them display odd behavior probably won’t surprise you. You assume that you’ve seen it all and your pet cannot surprise you anymore. Or at least you think so until you see them lick your cat’s bum.
Your dog cleaning their own behind is one thing. Licking the bum of your other pet can appear downright strange. Learn about why your dog may engage in that kind of behavior and what you can do about it by continuing with the rest of this article.
Why Does My Dog Lick My Cat’s Bum?
The sight of your dog licking your cat’s butt can be confusing. We know dogs sniff each other’s bums, but going so far as to lick a cat’s butt does seem like genuinely odd behavior. Or at least it seems that way to us.
Once you go through the next section of this article, you’ll see that there are some simple and, some would say, reasonable explanations for your dog exhibiting that kind of behavior. Check them out so you can understand your dog’s seemingly unusual actions just a bit better.
Your Dog Is Confirming the Identity of Your Cat
A dog’s sense of smell works like a kind of multi-purpose tool for them. They use it to locate food, find their way home, and recognize the people and animals in their surroundings.
You might have assumed that your pet will only sniff a fellow dog, but that’s not the case. They will use that heightened sense of smell to identify anyone or any animal, and that includes your pet cat.
So, why is licking necessary? Well, the licking helps because it allows them to gather more information. They are able to use both their nose and their tongue to ascertain the identity of your pet cat.
If your dog already recognizes your cat, they may lick their behind to confirm their suspicions. Your dog may also lick the behind of a cat they are meeting for the first time so they can obtain a frame of reference for their new companion.
Your Dog Is Trying to Help Your Cat Poop
Very young puppies don’t have complete control of their bowels yet. Left on their own, a young pup may not be able to poop regularly. That inability to poop regularly can cause issues in puppies.
Thankfully, their parents can help prevent that issue. An older dog can lick a puppy’s butt and effectively stimulate the latter’s bowels.
Your dog may mistakenly think that your pet cat could also use some help in the pooping department. Because of that, your dog may think it is also their job to stimulate your cat’s bowels through licking.
The intentions behind the action may be good, but your cat may not appreciate it. Keep an eye on them to see if something like that happens and break up a potential fight if your cat gets mad.
Your Dog Is Attempting to Groom Your Cat
There is another explanation for your dog licking your cat’s butt that is rooted in the former’s paternal/maternal instincts.
Similar to other animals, adult dogs like to groom their young. It’s an adorable sight to see in person and you can tell both parties like it.
Yet again, your pet dog’s instincts may take over and they may assume that your cat needs to be groomed. They may also think that a lick on the bum is a form of proper cat grooming.
Of course, your cat may not be that receptive to your dog’s offer of grooming, especially if it involves a lick on the backside. Your cat may show their disapproval of that action by hissing at your dog.
Your Dog Likes the Taste of Cat Poop
Lastly, your dog may also lick your cat’s butt for their own pleasure.
If you have both a cat and a dog inside your home, there’s a chance you’ve seen the latter display some particularly unpleasant behavior. To be more specific, you may have seen your dog pick up and eat your cat’s poop.
There’s no way to get around how nasty that is, but evidently, dogs like it. Some say dogs engage in that behavior because they like the taste of cat poop.
Licking is basically your dog’s way of getting more of the waste that they like. They may be searching for more pieces of poop in your cat’s butt so they can eat them. That’s not a pretty picture, but it could be the reason for your dog’s interest in your cat’s behind.
How to Stop My Dog from Licking My Cat’s Bum?
Now that you know the potential explanations for your dog licking your cat’s butt, you can decide if you want to do something about it. If your cat has clearly shown that they don’t enjoy it, you must do what you can to stop your dog.
How will you do that exactly? Included below are some methods of deterring your dog that are worth trying.
Teach Your Dog to Stop
Commands can teach your dog how to behave around people and other pets. If you see them approaching your cat to take a lick, tell them to stop.
Use a specific command for this specific behavior so your dog understands that they should not engage in it. Make use of the command as often as you need to so your dog gets the message.
Offer Your Dog an Alternative
Dogs like treats and they will chow down even if the treat in question came from your cat’s backside. Instead of allowing your dog to eat your cat’s poop, offer them an alternative. Stop them from licking your cat’s butt by giving them a treat.
You can even offer the treat after issuing the command to essentially reward your dog for not licking the cat.
Use a Physical Deterrent on Your Dog
If your dog isn’t picking up on the commands just yet, you can use a physical deterrent to stop them from licking your cat’s butt.
Use whichever deterrent typically works on your dog. You can use water or try to get between your two pets so your dog cannot proceed with their plan.