Why dogs hide their food

Dogs love to dig

Whether your dog spends most their time inside or outside they probably try to bury something. Cooper is a condo dog so he’s mainly inside. If I ever add anything special to his food, one of the first things he does is look for a hiding place in the house. Later I will find those treats in my couch or bed.  I understood burying food outside, but not indoors. It made me want to research why dogs hide their food.

It is completely normal

If you are worried that your dog may have health issues or that they shouldn’t be hiding anything know it is completely normal. It can be aggravating to find “gifts” from your pup in unexpected places, but they are doing what is in their nature. Wild dogs learned that food may be hard to come by so they often buried food to enjoy later.

Cooper doesn’t bury food too often but I notice when I give him something special that is when he is most likely to hunt for a special burial place. He most likely wants to save his special treat and eat at a time that is more convenient for him.

Some dogs are simply shy and bury their food so they can go back at another time to enjoy bites later. Every dog has a different personality so if you have multiple dogs, there may be one in the pack that prefers to eat in solitude.

They may also feel stressed or unsafe which makes them bury their food to prevent another dog from getting their paws on the savory snack.

Dogs have digestive systems which can handle eating buried food, but it is still a good idea to not let the food sit out for very long. I have found food around the house which Cooper buried that I wouldn’t want him to consume.

There may even be additional reasons beyond what I’ve covered, but the most important note is that it is completely normal. If the behavior goes beyond food and they are burying items around the house, it’s probably time to call a dog trainer. However, like humans, they are saving their “doggie bag” for later.




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