Why Do Dogs Bury Bones?

Burying bones is another typical dog behaviour, like when dogs sniff or wag their tail. This behaviour is instinctive and goes back millions of years. It’s a food-saving technique and strategy,  that all dogs are born with. Before dogs were domesticated this was often a necessary behaviour to ensure that they’d have adequate nutrition during times of prey scarcity.

Even today dogs in the wild (such as foxes) will kill a animal, feed on it until full, then bury the rest to hide it from other animals looking for food. If their next hunt isn’t successful, they can return to the hiding spot and feed on the leftover meal from the previous hunt.

You might also wonder why some dogs also hide their toys in the same manner, which obviously have no nutritional value. They are basically just fulfilling one of their natural instincts. The difference between domesticated and wild dogs is that domesticated dogs don’t generally retrieve items they’ve hidden or buried, since they are consistently fed and don’t need to return for the hidden item.

So if you are wondering where all of your dogs toys have disappeared to, try checking in places your dog might have thought to hide them, such as stuffed between couch cushions or underneath pillows. And if your garden starts to resemble a mine-field, do a little digging of your own for your canine buddy’s food cache before you start thinking you have a mole problem.