If your dog has been running away with toys, this post will show you likely reasons why and what you can do about them.

So, why does my dog run away with toys? Likely reasons why your dog runs away with toys are that your dog has learned that the behavior is rewarded, possessiveness, or that your dog is playing.

There are actually a number of possible reasons why your dog runs away with toys and it could be due to a combination of reasons. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause and there are some things to do about it.

Why does my dog run away with toys?

Below are likely reasons why your dog runs away with toys and what would make them more likely.

Encouraging the behavior

It could be the case that your dog has learned that the behavior gets rewarded. If you tend to give your dog extra attention, when it runs away with its toys, it will likely do it more in order to get more attention.

Possessiveness

The cause could be that your dog is being possessive. This is where your dog does not want people or animals taking things that it believes belong to it. This would be more likely if your dog gets aggressive when you try to take the toys away.

Nature

It would have been beneficial for dogs to hide what was theirs in the wild so that they could make use of it later. This would have especially been the case with food. It could be the case that your dog runs away with its toys because it naturally wants to keep what belongs to it. This would be more likely if your dog also hides its toys.

Your dog is playing

It could also be the case that your dog is trying to play with you. This would be more likely if your dog looks to see if you are chasing it and if it shows signs of excitement such as wagging its tail and having a lot of energy.

Things to consider

Below are some things to consider to help figure out the main reason why your dog has been doing it.

If your dog has always run away with toys

If your dog did not always run away with toys, it would help to consider what else happened when your dog first started doing it. If your dog started doing it suddenly, it could be due to things such as learning that the behavior gets rewarded or boredom.

The timing of when your dog runs away with toys

It would also help to consider if there is a certain time that your dog tends to run away with toys. If there is a certain time your dog tends to run away with toys, it could be the case that the timing has something to do with it. For example, if your dog runs away when you approach it, the cause would be more likely to be that your dog is playing or that it is being possessive.

What to do about my dog running away with toys?

Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.

Avoid rewarding the behavior

As mentioned above, it might be the case that your dog has learned that the behavior is rewarded. Instead, it would help to reward your dog when it does not run away and to avoid chasing it and rewarding it with extra attention when it does.

Let it do it

If your dog does not act unusually in other ways and it is not aggressive with its toys, the easiest option would be to simply allow your dog to continue doing it.

Why does my dog take things and run away?

Likely reasons why your dog takes things and runs away are that your dog has learned that the behavior gets rewarded, your dog is being possessive or that your dog is playing. It would help to consider the body language your dog shows when it does it and the timing. If your dog shows signs of excitement and it tends to do it before getting exercise, it could be the case that your dog is bored and looking for a way to stimulate itself.

Author

I created and currently manage Pet Dog Owner, the website you can go to when you have questions about your dog's behavior. It is my hope that you find Pet Dog Owner to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your dog. You can read more about me and my website here.