Wondering “why do dogs bury bones?” So am I!
I’ve never really understood why dogs want to bury things, especially food. Maybe it’s being hypoallergenic that makes me different from other dogs, but if I have food in front of me, I’m going to eat it. I’m certainly not going to bury it. What if I can’t find it later? What if another dog with a better sense of smell comes around and finds it first? That would stink.
My theory is that we should all just eat our treats when we get them. They’ll probably taste better right away. Why do dogs bury bones? I might not be a digger, but I’ve done my research, and this is what I’ve found.
A dog’s natural instincts may be one reason bones and other treats get buried. My fellow dogs might not know exactly why they’re digging, but it’s something dogs have done for all of time. Think about it: In the wild, dogs didn’t have humans who served them their dinners in a fancy dish. Dogs in the wild hunt for their own food.
They also don’t have a refrigeration system to store their catches. So, what’s a dog to do but find a safe spot to hide their future meals from other animals? Remember, it’s not just big animals they have to worry about eating their food. Wild dogs need to keep their bones and meat away from little insects too! Storing it underground also keeps the food longer, as the ground temperature is cooler than above ground.
Wild dogs also didn’t know when to expect their next meal, so storing for food for later would solve their problem of not knowing when to expect their next feeding.
Some dogs are actually prone to digging, and may be burying bones as a secondary measure. Many breeds, such as Siberian Huskies, Chow Chows and Malamutes, are born diggers. I’ve met many humans who’ve told me that their backyard is full with holes made by their dog. The two-leggers didn’t seem too impressed by the digging.
Are you still wondering why do dogs bury bones? I’ve got another reason for you: competition. Has your dog spent any time in a shelter? Do you have a household with many animals? Your dog may be burying his food or treats if he’s fearful that other dogs may eat it.
My friend Fenway does this. When her mom adopted her from the animal rescue, the workers told her that Fenway had developed what they called a “food hoarding” situation. She became quite feisty with other dogs if they tried to approach her while she was eating, and she’d growl and nip at the dogs if they got too close to her. She also used to try to hide some of the dry dog food in her crate. Because she’s the only dog in her household, she doesn’t act out with her meals anymore; however, on occasion, she does bury her treats in the cat’s litter box.
Now that, my friends, is disgusting. Imagine going back in to search for a treat one afternoon when you’re hungry? How does one decipher evil cat turds from month old treats? Gross.
Why do dogs bury bones? Well, there are many reasons! Does your dog bury bones in your yard – or worse, the cat litter box? Do you think it is because of natural instincts or competition? Let us know in the comments!
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