How Do Dogs Pick a Favorite Human?

As any family or couple knows all too well, dogs have a tendency to choose their favorite person. While most dogs love their owners without reservation, many dogs show a favoritism of one individual over another. It seems like there is not necessarily a connection between who feeds and walks the dog regularly versus those just present in the home on a daily (or even less often) basis. So, what gives? How do dogs choose their favorite person?

While every dog is different, there are a few reasons why dogs choose their favorites.

Simplemost//Facebook

Experts say socialization at an early age, typically between birth and six months old, is a big factor. This is why it is important to ensure your dog has positive interactions with many different types of people and places. If a dog had a really great interaction with women as a young pup for example, they might show preference for females at an older age.

Another major factor is attention and affection. Dogs respond to positive attention and will often gravitate to whoever gives them the most attention of those in the household. Dogs respond to not just the amount of affection, but also the quality of it as well. Someone who plays with a dog versus just walking them and feeding them can change their preference.

Associations are huge for dogs, meaning they associate a treat with someone who always has one ready for them. This is a way to show a dog that you are a positive force in their life, so it could be a good idea to give new visitors to your home a handful of treats for your dog.

Finally, a human’s personality and a dog’s breed are a major factor in this equation. An outgoing dog is best matched with a similar person who enjoys going out and about and socializing with others. Likewise, some dogs prefer just one person, like Greyhounds or Shiba Inus.

Next Article
ADVERTISEMENT
  • Man on Bike Gives Ride to Puppy in Need

    Colombo the puppy had a lot of bad luck for such a young dog. He didn’t seem to have a friend, and was living outside as a stray dog in the Columbus, Ohio area. Then, he was hit by a car. But things soon looked up for the dog who indeed found a friend to...

    Read More
  • Firefighters Don’t Stop Until They Save Puppy

    It was like any other day for the Evans family, who headed outside to take their little puppy MJ for a walk in the neighborhood. Then, without warning, the puppy suddenly disappeared. They had no idea what happened—one moment she was there, the next she was gone. As they looked closer, they realized there was...

    Read More
  • Dog Gets Mugshot After Police Run-In

    The Cape May Police Department in New Jersey is tough on crime. So, when the precinct received a call about a delinquency in progress, they jumped into action. As it turns out, the said crime was committed by a fluffy, four legged “criminal.” A little pug somehow managed to escape from her owner’s yard and...

    Read More
  • Puppy from Pet Store has Health Issues

    Moose is not a ‘normal’ dog. His face has an odd shape and he has an underbite. Sadly, he also has a laundry list of health problems that means he visits the veterinarian’s office quite often. But to his mom, a woman named Jennifer Osborne, none of that matters. Jennifer and her husband purchased Moose...

    Read More
  • Dog so Happy to Find Owner

    There is a woman named Lyn Crawford and she runs a Mississippi based volunteer group called the Jackson Friends of the Animal Shelter. This purpose of this group is to adopt out pets who were found on the streets by local animal control. However, she received a very special request recently. Lyn received a phone...

    Read More
  • 100 People Comfort Shelter Dogs

    The shelter can be a very scary place for a dog. On the Fourth of July, that experience becomes even more frightening for dogs everywhere—but especially in the shelter. The sound of fireworks can be stressful and scary for dogs, so to help ease the stress of the experience, a shelter in Arizona tried a...

    Read More
  • K9 Officer Shows off Special Talent

    John Allen and his K9 partner Spike are both specially trained officers for the Romeoville Police Department, located in the state of Illinois. The pair work side by side every day, working to keep their community safe. However, K9 Spike is a multi talented dog whose skills extend far beyond his abilities to help fight...

    Read More
  • Dog Chews Through Leash to Escape Heat

    There has been a heatwave hitting most of the country, making areas like Arizona see temperatures of 111 degrees Fahrenheit. Being outdoors for even a few minutes can be dangerous for humans and animals alike, and could lead to heatstroke or sunburn—or even death. So, it was unimaginable that someone would leave a dog outdoors...

    Read More