6. Signs of affection and approval
This one’s relatively simple, but dog “kisses,” in an affectionate context, may still signal things other than love. Dogs lick people during any kind of bonding exercise to show that they like it.
My dog mostly used her tongue for eating and grooming. On the rare occasions that she licked my arm or hand, it seemed to signal satisfaction. Whenever I’d scratch her head, or behind her ears, she’d tolerate that for a few moments before lifting her right foreleg.
This I always understood to mean that, while attention to her head was acceptable, she really wanted to be scratched under one foreleg, then the other. I’d know I found the desired spot because, for a couple of seconds, as I scratched, she would lick my arm. Precious moments.