Why Does My Dog Nibble My Ear? [10 Surprising Reasons]

As dog owners we’ve all been there. You’re quietly reading a book, making a shopping list, or scrolling through social media, and your dog jumps up on you and starts nibbling your ears.

It seems your dog is obsessed with your ears and just never quits biting them. You’ve no doubt wondered to yourself, why does my dog nibble my ear?

There are 10 main reasons why your dog nibbles your ear and they may surprise you. These reasons vary, you dog may be showing affection, our dog may simply be bored, your dog may be showing submission, your dog may simply like the taste of your ears, and more reasons besides that. 

Read on to discover the full answer to the question; why does my dog nibble my ear?

Why Does My Dog Nibble My Ear? [10 Surprising Reasons]

Now let’s dive into the reasons why your pet pooch likes to nibble your ears. You may be surprised by what you learn about your dog.

1. Your Dog Is Investigating

Dogs use their noses to investigate their surroundings, as we all know. So it’s no wonder they’re such effective search and rescue animals. The fact that dogs use their mouths and tongues to investigate is something that many people don’t know. There are times when a simple smell isn’t enough for our canine friend to obtain all the information they need. 

To get a sense of where you’ve been or what you’ve been up to, your dog may bite or nibble your ears to see if they can learn anything from it.

2. Your Dog Is Showing Affection

Most of the time, dogs will lick the ears of humans as a way of expressing appreciation for them.

Dogs show affection by carrying out grooming when they are happy, secure, and comfortable with the person they’re grooming. To show you how much they appreciate you and how happy they are to see you, your dog may lick your ears to express their affection.

It’s easy to tell a dog is licking your ears because of this if their face is smooth and relaxed, and there is no tension in the brow line.

3. Your Dog Is Being Playful

It’s possible that your dog is merely being fun when she bites or licks your ears. Puppies are more prone to this kind of behavior than older dogs. That’s why pups frequently like biting one other as a kind of play fighting.

Keep an eye out for these playful nibbles if you have an older dog. In order to protect yourself, you should dissuade her from behaving in a way that might hurt you, as we shall describe later.

4. Your Dog Needs Something From You

It’s possible that your dog is nibbling at your ears to tell you that your help is needed or wanted. It’s possible that she’s coincidentally right next to your ears. She may be hungry and want feeding. Or your pooch may need to go out for a poop. Get ready for some lovely puppy-dog eyes and gentle whining in the event that her request isn’t honored!

5. Your Dog Enjoys The Taste

It’s possible that your dog just really likes how your ears and earlobes taste. You may have just completed a workout when your dog decides to nibble and lick your ears. The salty perspiration and oil produced by our skin is disgusting to humans, yet many dogs find it appetizing.

Besides the salty flavor, they may be grooming you to make sure you’re clean. Because you’re your dog’s favorite human, she thinks it’s her duty to keep you clean and well-groomed.

6. Your Dog Needs Better Training

Dogs who have not been properly trained will act in accordance with their instincts rather than what you expect of them. This may mean they nibble your ears, among other behaviors that you’d prefer they didn’t do. Since you cannot expect your dog to act in the manner in which you want, it is critical that you educate your dog to behave in the manner in which you need.

7. Your Dog Is Excitable 

If your dog is overexcited, it may behave in this manner. In cases when your dog leaps up on you upon arrival at home or when you are preparing to take a stroll with it, this may be the cause of the nibbling and biting. Instead of giving in to your fur baby’s demands immediately, you may try waiting until your dog has calmed down before responding.

8. Your Dog Is Showing Respect

Grooming may be a sign of submission in canid animals like wolves and dogs. wolves of lower social standing may groom wolves of higher social standing to demonstrate to the lower-ranked wolves in the pack their submission and power.

In order to demonstrate their appreciation for you as a significant and vital part of their family unit, your dog may nibble the inside of your ears. Submissive habits like crouching and exposing their tummy increase the likelihood that this is the case.

9. Your Dog Is Bored

A very simple explanation is that your dog is bored and wants to let you know it’s time to have some fun together! This behavior may occur if your dog isn’t receiving enough mental or physical stimulation. Ear nibbling can typically be curbed by keeping them entertained with plenty of toys and food.

10. Your Dog Is Grooming You

Everyone has experienced the itch that they can’t reach. A back scratcher may take care of that difficult-to-reach region, but animals can’t use tools to do the same. This is where grooming behavior might come in helpful for pack animals, like dogs, or those who live in a family unit. Grooming each other in a “you scratch my back, and I’ll scratch yours” kind of way is common among animals that live in packs or families.

Dogs are known to lick the ears of their owners as a way of showing gratitude for all the ear scratches they get from their pet parent.

Why Is My Dog Obsessed With My Ears?

Why Is My Dog Obsessed With My Ears

Your dog may seem obsessed with your ears for many different reasons. For example, your dog may be showing you affection when they lick your ears. Your pet pooch may be showing your respect and demonstrating submission to you as the ‘leader of their pack’ when they nibble at your ears. It’s possible your canine kid is just bored and wants to play and knows that nibbling your ears is what’s most likely to prompt you to play with them.

The 10 biggest why your dog is obsessed with yours have been discussed above and cover all the common dog behaviors.

Related – Find out what to do if your dog is scooting along the floor on their bum by reading what cream can I put on my dog’s sore bum?

Should You Allow Your Dog To Nibble Your Ears?

It’s not necessary to intervene and stop your dog from nibbling your ears if you’re not bothered by the behavior. When your dog is demonstrating affection by licking you, let him do so if it makes you both happy.

However, if you want your dog to stop biting your ears, then it can be as simple as getting up and moving out of his reach. You may also provide a treat to divert his attention or suggest something else to do in a cheerful manner, such as “Do you want to play fetch?”

Similarly to any other problem behavior in dogs, you should stop your dog licking your ears as soon as you notice it, rather than waiting until it has been going on for a long period.

This is especially true if you have a puppy that is constantly nibbling your ears. As your puppy gets older, it may stop being a playful habit and it might turn into an aggressive behavior. As soon as possible, you should try to stop your dog from chewing your ears.

Related – Find out about how neutering can affect your dog by reading how long does a dog wear a cone after neutering?

Can A Dog Licking Your Ear Give You An Infection?

It’s possible that a dog can you give you an ear infection if they lick or nibble your ears. This is especially true if your dog also nibbles or licks the ears of other dogs or animals in the household or outside the household. 

Yeast and bacteria love the ear canal, making it a prime location for the development of infections.

Therefore, if you want to reduce the risks of your dog passing you an ear infection, then it’s sensible to stop your dog from nibbling or licking your ear.

Related – Find out why your female dog may be leaking fluid by reading, why is my female dog leaking clear odorless fluid?

How To Discourage Your Dog From Nibbling Your Ear

So you know the answer to the question, why does my dog nibble my ear, and maybe now you want it to stop. If you want to discourage your dog from nibbling or licking your ears, there are some steps you can take to achieve this. Read on below to discover what they are.

Be Firm And Say No To Your Dog Nibbling Your Ear

Getting physical with your dog might lead to aggressive behavior, so avoid doing so at all costs. However, it’s important to be strong by saying “No!” or “Ouch!” to your dog when they nibble your ear.

Say no or whimper back in a comparable sound to another dog’s yelping, no matter how delicate the bite is, if your dog bites or nibbles at you. Dogs ultimately learn that what they did was hurtful, and they will stop doing it if they are made aware of this.

Get Your Dog A Chew Toy So They Lose Interest Your Ears

Consider purchasing a selection of chew toys for your dog to nibble on. If you have a teething pup, the discomfort they may be experiencing might be alleviated if you use this method. It’s important to provide your dog with a range of chew toys so that they don’t gt bored with them.

Use A Taste Deterrent On Your Ears

It’s possible to apply a taste deterrent to discourage your dog from nibbling on your ears.

You may use taste deterrents with confidence since they are completely safe and will prevent your dog from nibbling your ears when they get a taste of anything that is repulsive to them.

Final Thoughts On Why Does My Dog Nibble My Ear?

This article should have provided you with the answer to the question, why does my dog nibble my ear? We think you’ll agree the reasons are surprising, with some being complex, but some being rather simple.

A dog nibbling your ears is not an immediate cause for concern, and its often done by dogs as a way to show affection and love for their pet parent. However, if you want to stop your dog biting and nibbling your ears then there are simple steps you can take.