Why Do Dogs Bury Bones

If you have kept dogs for quite some time, you may have noted that it has the tendency to bury their bones anyhow. Is this behavior normal? Could it signify a deeper problem? Are there ways to mitigate it? Or could it be that there is nothing absolutely wrong with it?

Well, we commend you first and foremost for being in the right place. Here, we shall seek to answer all these questions and provide a nice way forward. In our discussions below, we shall highlight and explain the things that push dogs to bury bones and whether it is a good thing to do or not.

For one, there is no unifying explanation as to why dogs dig and bury their bones. A number of factors may trigger this ghastly behavior. Knowing more about them will certainly go a long way in preparing you to cope with them. Dogs generally bury bones for the following reasons:

13 Common Dogs Bury Bones Reasons

1. Anxiety

When dogs are anxious, they will usually respond by burying the bones. Such an act calms them and makes them less angry as they naturally are. It evokes a soothing feeling that tends to reduce the level of tension and anxiety they have at that time. Also, they become more comfortable in the process. You should attempt to soothe your dog well to stem this issue.

2. Stress

Closely related to anxiety is the issue of stress. When dogs are stressed, they also tend to develop weird and irrational behaviors. One of the ways they manifest this behavior is to bury the bones. This gives them a false sense of relief. It does not take away all the pain though. You might need to take your dog through some kind of therapy as a way of relieving stress.

3. Boredom

Boredom is yet another reason why many dogs choose to bury their bones. To counter this menace of boredom, dogs will usually resort to engaging in activities that can add some thrill to them. One of these is to bury the bones in the ground. It provides some temporary relief to them. Keep your dogs engaged all the while to prevent them from having to get too bored.

4. Breed

Some breeds of dogs are naturally predisposed to this menace of burying bones than others. Examples of these include the Miniature Schnauzers, Basset Hounds, Beagles, Dachshunds, and the Terriers. Even if they are healthy and sound, they will just go ahead and bury the bones anyway! There is nothing much you can do about this. You just have to cope with the dog as it is.

5. Natural Instincts

To some extent, this behavior arises as a way of manifesting natural instincts. Simply put: they bury bones as a way of responding to external stimuli. If yours is of this kind, you will note that it does that mainly when there is no food or if it has sustained an injury of some sort. Similarly, you have no choice but to cope with your dog as it is since there is nothing much you can do about nature.

6. For Preservation

Modern dogs to some extent are more intelligent than the dogs of yesteryears. If they find surplus food today, they will usually preserve it by way of burying it in the ground and retrieving it later. This behavior is not limited to food alone. It also extends to valuable items that dogs cherish. Feeding your dog consistently and regularly will prevent this from happening.

7. Unscrupulous Hoarding

Other than purely due to survival, the dogs may also do this act of burying purely as a matter of hoarding. When there are many dogs around, they will want to safeguard their catches and prevent others to access the same. Burying the bones deep in the ground is one sure way of achieving this end. Train your dog to love and share the rest to prevent them from hoarding what they have.

8. Aging

Aging has an impact on triggering this activity. As dog’s age, they become less active and hence in need of less food. If and when that happens, they tend to bury the food they need not at the moment but are likely to need later. The younger ones are less prone to this activity hence.

9. Attention-seeking

Some dogs may do this as a way of seeking the attention of those who are around it. In this regard, they tend to seek more attention from you, its owner. Try to find out what the dog is attempting to communicate if you notice this peculiarity.

10. Imitation

Younger dogs like the pups will often imitate their elderly counterparts. They too will end up burying things not really out of necessity but just as a way of emulating the elderly ones. This behavior is absolutely normal and should hence not be a cause for alarm.

11. Possessiveness

Just like humans, dogs are also possessive in the sense that they are jealous of the wellbeing of their fellow dogs. One way of expressing this possessiveness is to bury their items in the soil and to keep them away from the others. Many dogs do it as a way of responding to sibling rivalry.

12. Over-Feeding

Burying bones may be a sign of over-feeding. Put differently: you give your dog too much food that it is not able to ingest fully at that time. Instead of sharing the same with the others in need, it defers the same by way of burying it in the soil.

13. Nausea/Inappetance

The opposite may also hold true. When a dog is nauseated or lacks appetite at the time, it may decide to bury the bone and retrieve it at a later date. If it buries the bone under this circumstance, you will often notice that it exhibits signs of diarrhea, vomiting, and behavioral anomalies.


We bring an end to our look into why dogs bury their bones there. Having done that, we are now confident that you have the preparedness necessary to take on your dog the next time it exhibits this strange behavior. That may require a careful study and analysis of your dog.

Is it not awesome now to follow it up by sharing the information far and wide? You will in doing so, aid the others who may also be in need of the insight you have received. Take your dog to a veterinarian as well to help you identify the issues and work on it before things get out hand.

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