Tinkerbell daintily takes a piece of her food from the bowl and walks it out to the front hall carpet, only to drop it, inspect and then finally eat it. One piece of kibble at a time. Why, why, why?

Surprisingly, more dogs do this than you might think. It’s the pack mentality of dogs, that signals “the rest of the pack might want that food, so I better take it away to eat in peace.”

It’s behaviour that harkens back to the domestic dog’s wolfish ancestry. In fact, the closest living relative of the dog is the gray wolf.  Although not all scientists agree just how closely dogs are related to wolves, everyone agrees, both are very much pack animals. Both form social packs, with clear leaders and followers.


Believe it or not, Morkies are very closely related to the wolf; in fact they are part of the same species. That’s where they get some of their “odd” habits, like removing food from the dish and taking it somewhere else to eat.


In the pack, fighting is dangerous, so who wolves who weren’t the alpha dogs, would drag off bits of the kill to eat on their own. And your little Morkie IS a wolf at heart, believe it or not.

A dog that does this is not only acting according instinctually, but he might be saying, “I need more privacy.” On the other hand, if your Morkie is eating in the kitchen and everyone’s in the family room, he might prefer to carry his meal in to eat with you because he’s lonely.


The small dog’s preferred path to eating well

Another reason to walk off with food?

Many of us feed our dogs in metal bowls. Sometimes the sound of hard food bouncing around in the bowl can be frightening – or your dog’s tags might be jangling against the bowl, causing disturbing noise.



One of our other dogs used to take a piece of food, walk a short distance from the bowl, then toss it up in the air. Then he’d land on that morsel like it was a live mouse.


Nothing to Worry About

Jill Layton, writing for The Dodo, advises, “as long as your dog’s behavior is not aggressive or causing any harm, simply embrace this as part of her personality.”


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