Why Does My Dog Bark At His Food?

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If there’s one phrase that has held throughout the decades, it’s that dogs are a man’s – and a woman’s – best friend! They’re incredibly loyal, fun to have around, and the missing piece of a puzzle everyone needs in their life. If you own a dog, you know that there’s a lot more to being an animal parent than playing fetch. 

As lovable as they are, canines can be pretty funny sometimes! The quirkiness of your pet may leave you scratching your head, and one of these instances is when they bark at their food – especially when it’s the best food for them. It looks as if the dog is trying to communicate with the kibble in their bowl to the human eye.

This shouldn’t be too bizarre considering that dogs bark quite a lot; whether it’s a muted roar or a really loud grumble, it seems that they’re always talking. Naturally, the context explains the reason; however, when the former doesn’t provide any logical explanation, it’s because the rules of the animal kingdom are different than those governing the human world. 

Since you’re here, you’re wondering why your dog barks at its food. Fortunately, animal science has a lot to say about this behavior.

Reason #1: Your dog finds the food tasty

Barking is a dog’s way of communicating, and it’s a useful indicator for when an intruder is involved. That said, dogs don’t only make noise when something is about to go wrong. Just like cat’s purr to show their human owners some affection, your dog might just be barking at its food because it’s enjoying it. 

This can be common after a diet switch-up or when you’re feeding it one of its favorite meals. Think about it, don’t you sometimes talk when you’re chewing on delicious fried chicken or biting into a savory donut? Just like that, animals like to convey messages too.

Additionally, your dog may be barking because it recognizes a particular ingredient in the food. For instance, when canines get sick, getting them to eat their medicine is a massive struggle. Therefore, pet owners have to resort to hiding tablets in fruits or among kibble, but when the drugs have a spicy taste, dogs are quick to spot them, regardless of how well concealed they are.

Reason #2: The theory of resource guarding

No matter how domesticated your pet may be, it’s still a dog with the same instincts as an undomesticated animal. Dogs are quite territorial, especially when it comes to the space they live in and the food they eat.

If a dog barks while feeding, it may just be a sign of food aggression. This is common when there are other dogs in the house, and one barks to let the other know not to come near its food dish. Contrarily, a bark may also be a way of signaling others to join in, particularly when the dog doesn’t feel too hungry. Female dogs tend to do this when their pups are weaning, and the barking serves as a verbal invitation.

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