How Do Dogs Choose Their Favorite Person?

How Do Dogs Choose Their Favorite Person?

It can be pretty easy to figure out who a person's favorite person is and why. With a dog, there is a bit more learning involved. Dogs can't tell us with words who their favorite human is or why they love this person so much. However, there are plenty of hints a dog can give.

Scientists have studied the behavior of dogs for ages. During this time, one of many experiments explored how dogs bond.

Dogs don't exactly choose their favorite human in the same way people don't. Our favorite people are those that make us feel safe and happy. The same is true for a dog.

Let's take a look at how a dog thinks when it comes to making friends. We'll explore a couple of things that factor into a dog imprinting on his favorite human.

Early Life Experience 

The person that a dog spends most of his or her early months with can play a role in choosing a favorite. A young dog might get familiar with one family member more than the others. If a young dog sees and interacts with one person most often, a bond starts to form.

In nature, puppies look to their mothers, or other older dogs, for guidance. In the same way, a puppy might look to the person they always see when they want to learn. The more time spent together during early life, the more likely a puppy will bond with the person they see.

Sending Safety

A dog doesn't always understand why we do the things we do, but the good news is that they don't have to. The feelings behind an action mean more to a dog than the reason for it. So, when humans do things that make a dog feel safe, they attach safety to the human, not the action.

Let's say you're planning to take your dog for a walk, for example. Your pet's safety means the world to you, so you take precautions. You might decide that a comfortable, high-quality harness is a must.

In your mind, you choose this product because you know it will keep your dog from pulling on the leash. It will hug the dog to keep him comfortable.

A dog doesn’t get all that. A dog probably has no idea why you're putting the harness on. He just appreciates that you're taking time to make him feel safe.

Emotional Connections 

Every dog owner knows that dogs have complex feelings. They love, they get scared or sad, they feel excited, and so on. A dog uses actions to express feelings, and afterward, they wait for their person to respond. If a human understands what the dog is trying to tell them, they do what they can to give the animal what he wants.

Dogs and humans can learn how to read each other's feelings when they try. Even though they'll never speak the same language, they can reach common ground. When a human and a dog communicate emotionally, they bond. An emotional connection forms and both living things feel closer to each other.

Dogs and humans both feel a sense of belonging when they find another creature that understands them on a deep level.

Matching Personalities

Dogs are not blank slates. They have personalities just like people do. When people spend time together, some get along better than others. In fact, some get along great with each other. When dogs and humans have matching personalities, they usually bond better.

For example, if a household is usually loud and energetic, one member out of the bunch might be very quiet and calm. Let's say the family dog is also quiet and calm. Because of this, he will be more comfortable spending time with a person that matches him.

Dogs, just like people, want to spend time with people who bring out the best in them. If your personality is something your dog likes, he or she will be drawn to you more than others.

Quality Time 

Finally, a dog can have hobbies just like a person. A dog can enjoy certain activities more than others. When a human takes part in a dog's favorite activity with him, it deepens their bond.

Most of the time, the activities a dog likes are easy to guess. Playing fetch, going for a walk, or even just goofing around at home can make a dog's day.

If you're the person who plays with the family dog most often, you might be his or her favorite. If you spend the most quality time with the animal, give him treats, or just let him sleep on your bed, he'll appreciate it.

In short, it’s easy to tell who your dog’s favorite person is if you pay attention to the hints they give. If you want to be a dog’s favorite person, all you have to do is love them.

SOURCES: Rover, iHeartDogs, Barkspot, The Factual Doggo
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