How to Stop Your Dog From Rubbing His Nose on the Carpet

by Tom Ryan
    Cleaning out facial folds may eliminate this behavior.

    Cleaning out facial folds may eliminate this behavior.

    Chris Amaral/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    If your dog is rubbing his nose and grinding his face against the carpet, it could be just a silly habit, but it also could be a warning sign. A dog that exhibits this behavior could be doing so as a response to an allergy or even a parasite, so if the behavior is chronic, a trip to the vet probably is in order. Still, by taking a few simple steps yourself, you can try to alleviate his irritated nose and put an end to this behavior.

    Step 1

    Look at your dog's face, particularly his nose. If it looks raw, red or irritated, he could have an infection. It's hard to determine yourself if the irritation was caused by his nose rubbing or simply worsened by it, so schedule a vet appointment to get him looked at. Allergies also can make the dog's face itch, so you may have to switch his food or even administer an allergy medication prescribed by your vet.

    Step 2

    Clean out your dog's face. If your dog has wrinkles, like a pug or bulldog, the folds around his muzzle can collect bacteria and other grime that itch and irritate him. Wrinkly-faced dogs that need their faces cleaned will try to alleviate the irritation by grinding their muzzles against the carpet, your body or any other padded surface. Clean out the folds at least once a week with a medicated towel from your pet supply store.

    Step 3

    Distract and scold your dog when you catch him rubbing his nose on the carpet. Some dogs don't have a good reason for rubbing their noses like this -- they're just bored, or it feels good or they do it to mark their territory. While scolding your dog after the fact doesn't work, if you catch him doing it, clap your hands to distract him and give the "No" command. If you're consistent with your reprimanding, he'll learn to stop doing it.

    An Item You Will Need

    • Medicated face wipes


    • Always consult an experienced veterinarian regarding the health and treatment of your pet.

    Photo Credits

    • Chris Amaral/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Tom Ryan is a freelance writer, editor and English tutor. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in English writing, and has also worked as an arts and entertainment reporter with "The Pitt News" and a public relations and advertising copywriter with the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

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