Why Do Dogs Mouths Quiver After Licking

Why Do Dogs’ Mouths Quiver After Licking?

If you have ever observed a dog licking its lips or a surface, you may have noticed that their mouths often quiver afterward. This behavior might seem odd, but it is actually quite common among our furry friends. Let’s delve into the reasons behind why dogs’ mouths quiver after licking.

1. Sensory overload: Dogs have an incredibly sensitive sense of taste, and licking allows them to explore their surroundings. When they lick something with a strong taste or texture, the sensory overload can cause their mouths to quiver in response.

2. Nervousness or anxiety: Dogs may lick their lips when they feel nervous or anxious. This can be a sign of stress, and the quivering of the mouth may occur as a physical manifestation of their emotional state.

3. Anticipatory response: Sometimes, dogs’ mouths quiver after licking because they are anticipating something exciting or rewarding. This could be a result of conditioning, as they associate certain tastes or situations with positive experiences.

4. Pleasure or satisfaction: Licking releases endorphins in a dog’s brain, which can create a pleasurable sensation. The mouth quivering afterward might be a physiological response to this feeling of satisfaction.

5. Cooling down: Dogs don’t have sweat glands like humans do, so they rely on panting to regulate their body temperature. Licking helps to cool them down, and the mouth quivering could be a way for them to dissipate excess heat.

6. Muscle tension release: Licking and the subsequent mouth quivering may serve as a way for dogs to release tension in their jaw muscles. Similar to how humans might chew gum to relieve stress, dogs may lick and quiver their mouths as a mechanism for relaxation.

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7. Breed-specific traits: Some dog breeds, such as the Boxer or Bull Terrier, are more prone to mouth quivering after licking. This could be attributed to their genetics or specific facial structure.


1. Is mouth quivering after licking normal in dogs?
Yes, it is a common behavior among dogs, and in most cases, it is perfectly normal.

2. Should I be concerned if my dog’s mouth quivers excessively?
If the quivering is excessive, persistent, or accompanied by other concerning symptoms, it is advisable to consult with a veterinarian.

3. Can mouth quivering after licking indicate health issues?
In some cases, excessive mouth quivering can be a sign of oral pain, dental problems, or underlying health issues. A veterinary check-up can help rule out any potential problems.

4. Can I stop my dog from licking excessively?
Training and redirection techniques can help manage excessive licking, especially if it becomes a nuisance or leads to skin irritation.

5. Is mouth quivering related to dental problems?
While some dental issues can cause mouth quivering, it is not always the case. Regular dental care and check-ups are crucial for maintaining your dog’s oral health.

6. Can I use mouth quivering as an indicator of my dog’s emotions?
Mouth quivering alone cannot be used as a sole indicator of a dog’s emotions. It is essential to consider other body language and behavior cues.

7. Should I discourage my dog from licking altogether?
Licking is a natural behavior for dogs and serves various purposes. However, excessive licking or licking harmful substances should be discouraged through training and supervision.

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In summary, dogs’ mouths quiver after licking due to a combination of sensory, emotional, and physiological factors. While it is generally a normal behavior, excessive or prolonged mouth quivering should be monitored and evaluated by a veterinarian to ensure your dog’s well-being.