View Full Version : Weird Jack Russell behavior...yes, even for them!

Feb. 8, 2010, 01:47 PM
I have an adopted female JRT. We think she's about 14 years old. She is a strange animal but we love her very, very much. She has an addiction to licking people's legs and will get very angry if she can't have a leg to lick. Weird I know, but true. Well, now she has started this thing where she will walk along licking the rug. There is NOTHING on the rug and she will do it continually until we stop her, which is immediately. What could be causing this and have you ever heard of something so weird?

Thank you.:confused:

Feb. 8, 2010, 01:50 PM
My JRT just HAS to be licking someone. Arms, hands, legs, it doesn't matter as long as she's licking you. It is quite annoying actually. It must be a JRT thing.

Sparky Boy
Feb. 8, 2010, 02:09 PM
My JRT will wait outside of the shower to lick your ankles when you step out. :) That's the only time she does it though.

Feb. 8, 2010, 02:15 PM
My JRT is a licker too. Not so much people, probably because that is my one pet peeve about dogs, but he will lick the rug outside the shower while I am inside, then jump in and lick the shower floor when I get out if I'm not quick enough with the door, etc. If I tell him to stop, he does though, so it's not that big of an issue for me anymore. Sometimes he is so caught up in his licking of the rug that he doesn't even hear me tell him no and I have to tap him with my finger before he snaps out of it..lol.

Feb. 8, 2010, 02:20 PM
What about a salt lick?

Feb. 8, 2010, 02:42 PM
My sister had a JRT girl known for her 'atomic tongue' :lol:

However, considering the background or lack there of, I think it's a neurotic condition, maybe stress, or just automated...

If in doubt Rescue Remedy....

Feb. 8, 2010, 03:46 PM
Maybe some doggy anti anxiety pills :) like the other person said sounds like some stress or neurotic behavior. I know they do have some medications for dogs that help. Good luck with that! I bet it looks funny you should tape it and send it to the Funniest Animals show on tv.

Feb. 8, 2010, 05:39 PM
If you use lotion on your legs for dry skin or have soap with lotion in it the dog could like the taste of that.

Feb. 8, 2010, 10:33 PM
Ditto....my JRT is a licker too.....gotta just love it! :D

Feb. 9, 2010, 09:36 AM
It must be a terrier thing. Both of mine love to lick. They're both healthy and happy, so I doubt it's a medical problem. Just one of those quirks!

Feb. 9, 2010, 09:59 AM
I have a heeler cross who will lick my husband's legs incessently until commanded to stop. He doesn't do this to me. He also has begun in the past year to lick the floor endlessly. It drives me crazy, I don't know why he does it but he's always been a bit neurotic so that's probably part of it...

Feb. 9, 2010, 11:54 AM
Mine is a licker. Hands, feet, and the couch, blanket, bed...etc. Vet said it is like an orally fixated child that needs a pacifier or something to calm them.

Feb. 9, 2010, 02:48 PM
just get him near your face and you'll know why!!!!!!

Feb. 9, 2010, 02:52 PM
Mine doesn't lick the carpet, but will lick you, and other items, to death. He comes to work with me daily, and when the UPS man drops 5 boxes in my office, he will lick each one. Just once. Sniff sniff sniff, LICK.

Feb. 9, 2010, 03:06 PM
Its a neurosis, and anxiety thing. Licking is a submission activity, and even though these dogs are not axious about you folks personally, as far as whether they are submissive enough, because the behaviour is borne out of anxiety or worry, and licking is the correct response for anxiety about the pack around them, they are licking to soothe themselves. Its like thinking over and over, its okay, everythings good, its okay, everythings good...

For these dogs, licking has become a soothing habit. Its a way to soothe themselves. Like some people rock back and forth, or smoke a ciggarette or they tap their foot, or think of an autistic person who is rocking back and forth.

The dogs are neurotic - as in they have to repeat a behaviour which makes them feel safe.

Personally, unless they have brain damage (and there are those who believe that domesticated dogs actually are brain damaged wolves, so its not an inappropriate comparison, actually), I would consider it a habit. I would be after them always to stop and I would make sure they get good "pack" time, like long walks in the woods or whatever the dog needs with me. Then I would insist on good behaviour in the house.

Most dogs I know are not allowed to lick people. Mine aren't. My dog has once or twice been seen just licking and licking and licking, like the rug or something. I have told her "leave it". She hasn't done it in front of me in ages. I don't know if she does it alone. No furniture damage or anything. She also is not allowed to lick people, hands or faces or anything, so she knows what I mean when I say that about the licking.

This behaviour is neurotic and they trained themselves to regard it as something safe to do which soothes them, so I think they can be trained out of it. Might be hard, but it can be done.

Feb. 9, 2010, 03:25 PM
AR - I know that it can be a self soothing/neurotic behavior, but it can also be grooming and socialization behavior.

My Pugs groom each other regularly - even the dominant one will groom the others. They sometimes will try to lick my hands, and I'm OK with Pug Kisses - these are social behaviors with my dogs, not neurotic.

The only strange behavior is from Pippin - sometimes he will lick air. He does this when he's in sort of a trance, so I think he's meditating about steak or something...:lol:

Feb. 9, 2010, 03:31 PM
The only strange behavior is from Pippin - sometimes he will lick air. He does this when he's in sort of a trance, so I think he's meditating about steak or something...:lol:

This is a classic description of a petit mal seizure. Please talk to your vet.

Feb. 9, 2010, 03:58 PM
This is a classic description of a petit mal seizure. Please talk to your vet.

Thanks for bringing that to my attention. I never knew that.

Feb. 9, 2010, 05:37 PM
I love it when my dog licks my legs - am I weird?? :) :)

Feb. 9, 2010, 05:47 PM
In a word- YES! =P

Just playing. I'm neurotic about dogs licking me. I just cannot stand it and have never allowed it to be an acceptable behaviour for my dogs. It stems from dealing with friends with untrained dogs that licked and jumped up on people (another unacceptable behaviour) without reprimand because "aawww, he's just trying to give you a kiss" or whatever.

Feb. 9, 2010, 09:20 PM
No, my dog is well behaved, in a casual sort of way. He is definitely not neurotic or anything sinister.