Why Does My Dog Greet Me With a Toy?
One of the most lovable behaviors of our dog Sally was her affection for her stuffed bear. When we first brought her home as an eight week old puppy, we gave her a stuffed bear that was about the same size of her for comfort. She became attached to that bear from the very beginning. She slept with it, snuggled it and as she grew bigger and was able to, she would carry it in her mouth everywhere.
Over the years Sally had many other toys, stuffed animals, balls, squeaky toys, frisbees, etc. But “Bear” was always her favorite. It was the one she went to for comfort.
Sally was the type of dog who would always great us at the door when we returned home and usually she would grab the first toy she could find on her way to the door. But, if we were away for several days, just any toy wouldn’t do and she would scamper around the house looking for Bear so that we would get a proper greeting I guess. It was very sweet.
My dog Max would carry toys around with her when she was pregnant and she would bring the toys – particularly a green squeaky frog – into her whelping bed with the puppies.
Tino didn’t carry them around the house, but he would carry them outside and scatter them around the yard. I think his plan was to bury them, but he only did that on occasion.
Neither Jack or Maggie do this – they rarely play with toys at all and show no preference or have a ‘favorite’.
Why do dogs do this? Why do the carry toys to greet us, or just carry them around and whine?
It’s thought that it’s related to what dogs value – they value these toys and want to offer them to you as a gift, to share them with you. Or they may want to find a safe place for them so they can return to them later – much the same as what they do with bones.
Either explanation makes sense to me.
How about you – does your dog carry toys around with them?