If your dog cries, when it gets a bone, you might be wondering why and what you can do about it. This post will show you a number of possible causes and what you can do to get yours to stop.
So, why does my dog cry when it gets a bone? Possible reasons why your dog cries when it gets a bone are that it wants to hide the bone, a mouth injury, possessiveness or you might have inadvertently encouraged the behavior.
Since there are a number of possible causes, it would help to consider what would make each of them more likely. Once you have a good idea of the cause, it should become easier to get it to stop doing it.
Why your dog cries when it gets a bone
Below are some reasons why your dog might cry when it gets a bone and what would make them more likely.
The reason why it does it could be that it is excited due to the anticipation of getting the bone. This would be more likely to be the reason why it does it if it starts crying before it actually is given the bone. If it continues to do it after getting the bone, it would be more likely to be due to one of the reasons mentioned below.
The cause could be that it has a mouth injury. This would be more likely if it has started doing it suddenly, it cries when it has the bone in its mouth and if its mouth has been bleeding. In this case, the best option would be to take it to a vet.
It wants to hide it
The reason why dogs do it is often because they want to hide or to bury the bone. Dogs will often, naturally, want to hide their possessions. This is likely to be because, hiding their food would have helped their ancestors to survive.
As a result, it could be the case that not being able to find a place to hide the bone, is causing your dog to become slightly anxious and to start crying. This would be especially likely to be the case if it does often hide its bones and if it wants to go into the backyard when it has them.
It’s saying thanks
The reason why it does it might be because it is being grateful for the bone. This would be more likely if it cries while you are giving it the bone and it stops shortly after.
Encouraging the behavior
It might also be the case that you have encouraged your dog to do it by rewarding it when it does it. If you tend to give it things such as extra attention or other rewards, when it cries with the bone, it will likely do it more in order to get more rewards.
Instead, it would help to reward it when it does not cry, to avoid rewarding it when it does and to deal with any other reasons why it might be crying.
It could also be the case that it is being possessive. This would be more likely if it tends to cry when you go near it with the bone and if it can become aggressive when it has the bone and you try to take it. This post has some tips on correcting possessive behavior in dogs.
Things to consider
Below are some things to consider when figuring out the main reason why your dog has been doing it.
What else happened when it first started doing it
If it did not always cry when it used to get a bone, it would help to consider what else happened when it first started doing it. If it started doing it suddenly, it would be more likely to be due to things such as injury, learning that it gets rewarded or something causing it to be unable to hide the bone.
If your dog always cries when it gets a bone
It would also help to consider if there is anything different about the timing of when it cries with the bone. For example, if it tends to cry more when you are giving it the toy, it would be more likely to be due to excitement.
What to do about your dog crying when it gets a bone
Below are some options you have when dealing with your dog’s crying with bones.
Wait for it to stop crying before rewarding it
As mentioned above, it could be the case that your dog has learned that crying results in it getting rewarded. If it starts crying before you give it the bone, it would help to wait for it to stop crying and then to give it the bone when it has calmed down. By doing so, you should be able to teach it that crying will not result in it getting a bone but being well-behaved will.
Ensure that it is not due to an injury
If it has started doing it suddenly and it seems like there could be an issue with its teeth or gums, the best option would be to take it to a vet.
Allow it to do so
It is not uncommon for dogs to cry when they get bones. If it has not been behaving unusually in other ways and it has not been crying excessively, it would likely be ok to let it continue doing it. However, if it has been doing it excessively, consider getting help from a dog behaviorist. By doing so, you should be able to see what has been causing it and how you can get it to stop.