Chewing bones is a favorite pastime of dogs. If a bone is very sweet, the dog may bury it as well.
To humans, this behavior may seem strange, so why do dogs put so much energy into burying their prized things?
“For some reason, a dog bite causes anything,” said Teotie Anderson, a Florida-based professional dog trainer and behavioral consultant. “When you don’t know when you’ll get your next meal, it makes sense to hide the leftovers.”
related: Are dogs really looking at us and smiling?
The act of burying bones is a type of “food caching”, which stores the available food supply for the purpose of later access. This is a common behavior among many species of birds and mammals, including the dog ancestors of domestic dogs – Gray wolves – The place where dogs inherited their burial instincts.
While wolves, known for their clever hunting skills, tend to stay in a muddy field long enough to completely ruin their prey, they sometimes carry the remains of a kill And burials, according to a 1976 study published in the journal. Ethics. (Wolves and other canids are known as “Be scattered, “This means that they break their leftover food in shelters located in fairly large areas.) The same study showed that even wolves cache puppies, and search for their caches by a sibling Will move to stop from. So, when the dogs seem this unusual. Behave in their backyard, rest assured – they are simply following their innate “inner wolf.”
Most dogs today do not need to store food because they have pet parents to feed them, but this does not mean that their natural urge for things to stay away later still does not exist. Sometimes, the instinct to bury things has nothing to do with storing food or protecting it from scavengers. According to the dog behaviorist Caesar Milan, Can be a dog’s way of tasting cherished items for burial, so they can be enjoyed again later. It can also be an initiative for bored dogs to play with their owner or a way to relieve stress for anxious dogs.
Meanwhile, some breeds, such as terriers, are simply more prone to digging, whether to bury food or to bill the hole for a particular reason. “Dogs breed specifically to hunt or chase critters in their dens, who often like to bury toys, bones, and treats,” Anderson said. “So, it is not uncommon that a dachshund is seen burying a bone under the pillow of a couch.” Anderson said that if there is no tendency to bury a dog, it should not be a cause for concern.
Dogs “cache” whenever the mood hits. “Some dogs stop a treat and then ignore it for a week. Some dogs are indecent and shake their prize 20 times before one [spot]. And other dogs bury a bone and forget it completely, ”Anderson said.
If a dog does not receive any treasure, you can bet it Is not Because it had forgotten its whereabouts. According to research in the journal, dogs have an incredibly deep sense of smell, which is about 10,000 to 100,000 times more powerful than humans Applied Animal Behavior Science, So remembering their memories has rarely been an issue.
Apart from bones, what kind of things do dogs like to bury? Anderson told Live Science that it runs the gamut. “I once knew a dog that would bury rocks. I don’t know why these rocks were so special, but they were special to him.”
Originally published on Live Science.