Why Do Dogs Like Squeaky Toys? Dogs are naturally very playful animals and most enjoy a good play session with some of their favorite toys. If your dog loves squeaky toys you may have wondered why they love these toys so much. Here, we are going to take a look at why exactly our furry friends enjoy playing with squeaky toys so much!
Why do dogs like squeaky toys?
There are many reasons why your dog loves a good squeaky toy. Here are some reasons fur baby is such a huge fan of playing with these fun toys:
It Feels Good
When dogs make a toy squeak, the sound makes the pleasure center of the brain light up! This is similar to how you might feel a rush of excitement when you go on a roller coaster- and then you want to go on it again. Just like people, dogs have pleasure centers in the brain and they can make it “light up” by doing things they enjoy. And to feel that sensation again, or to simply keep that feeling going, dogs will continue to squeak their squeaky toy.
This is also a reason why your dog may prefer squeaky toys over other types of toys- squeaky toys give your dog feedback, whereas other toys do not (this is sometimes known as a “feedback loop”). Additionally, studies have shown that the sound that these toys make even releases dopamine and oxytocin in your dog’s brain, which are the feel-good hormones.
Satisfies Their Hunting Instinct
As you probably know, all dogs descend from wolves and this means that they have a natural hunting instinct. And this actually comes into play with why dogs simply love squeaky toys! These play things simulate the feeling of hunting for dogs. This is due to the fact that squeaky toys were designed to simulate the sound that smaller animals make when they are scared or frightened.
Dogs will “hunt” the squeaky toy to satisfy this instinct. This is great because playing with these types of toys are a safe way for dogs to take out their natural hunting instincts. This is also the reason behind why some dogs may play with and chew a squeaky toy to the point where it is no longer recognizable- this simulates the “killing” their “prey” (aka their toy).
While dogs can pretend to “hunt” any type of toy, squeaky toys seem to be a popular choice for this because the squeaking makes it seem more like real prey. Additionally, while any breed of dogs can love playing with squeaky toys, it seems like hunting dogs love toys that have squeakers in them the best- because of their hunting instincts.
The Sound Is Exciting
Additionally, dogs just simply enjoy the sound of the squeaking. To them, the sound of the squeaks exciting. The sound may then get your dog excited and make them continue their playing. Plus, this is great for their health! This is due to the fact that dogs have a natural play drive, and when they have extra motivation to play (such as making a toy squeak), they are given permission to get out some of their built-up energy and just have fun.
Playtime With You
Dogs may also associate squeaky toys with playing with you which may make them love squeaky toys the best. This is because when they are playing with a quiet toy, you might not notice them playing. On the other hand, it is hard to ignore the sound of a dog squeaking a toy like this. If this causes you to get down to their level and play with your dog, then they might associate that toy with playtime with you.
They may continue to play with a noisy squeaky toy in order to get your attention and then in turn get you to play with them. So on top of getting the positive feedback from the squeaking sound, they are also getting positive feedback from you.
Another reason that dogs like these squeaky toys so much is because they have a natural instinct to chew things and squeaky toys are great fun to chew. Dogs have this instinct because it helps them with their dental health. Playing with a toy satisfies their innate need to chew things, plus, the toy also massages their mouth which just simply feels good.
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