Why Do Dog Carry Its Food Bowl Around? (9 Reasons)

Why Does Dog Carry Its Food Bowl Around

If your dog tends to carry its food bowl around, you may wonder why they do so.


There are various reasons as to why he may be carrying his bowl around from anxiety to teething.


Knowing why your dog carries his bowl around may help you better understand him and get him to stop doing so.


If you are wondering why your dog does this, read more to find out some possible reasons and what you can do about them.


1. Ancestors

This action may be carried over from their ancestors back when they used to move their food to a secluded corner to hide them from other animals.


This may result in your dog having an instinct to stow their food in a “safe” spot, away from others.


2. Stashing Their Food

dog stashing food

Similarly, they may be stashing their food, “for the future”.


Your dog may be doing so especially if you notice them digging before placing their food in a spot.


If they are doing so, ensure that you are not overfeeding your dog, which may result in them wanting to save their leftovers for another time.


3. Teething

A possible reason as to why your dog may be doing so is to allow it to soothe its teeth when they are teething.


This reason is more common in puppies and has a new set of teeth growing.


They may also bite on other things such as your furniture.


If they are teething, you can get them toys that will help soothe their teeth, rather them allowing them to bite their bowl.

4. They Are Hungry

If they carry their bowl around, especially when they have yet to be fed, it may mean that they are hungry.


They may be reminding you to feed them.


Especially if they do this constantly, you should ensure that they are being fed enough with the right amount of calories while allowing them to maintain a healthy diet.



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5. Anxiety

Dogs typically carry things in their mouths when they are anxious.


This may be a cause of them carrying their food bowls.


If your dog is used to free-feeding, having an empty bowl may alert them and trigger anxiety.


6. Playing With Their Food

If your dog tends to move their bowl while there is food in it, they may be playing with their food, watching the kibbes bounce up and down.


This may excite them, getting them more fulfilled while eating.


7. Doesn’t Like Eating Alone

Your dog may be feeling lonely while eating in a corner and may want to move their bowl closer to you.


Dogs naturally love companionships, so, they may want to come closer to you or your other pets while eating.


Your dog may also want to be a part of your family when eating.


8. Doesn’t Like Metal Bowls

dog eating in plastic bowl

If your dog has a metal bowl that may frighten or annoy them while eating, they may want to move it to a different location.


As metal sounds may startle dogs, they may want to bring their food away from the noise.


If you notice your dog not liking their metal bowl, try swapping it for a plastic one instead.


Plastic bowls are much quieter than metal ones, helping your dog be less frightened when eating.


Alternatively, you can provide them with paper plates instead, depending on the type of food they eat.


9. A Change

Your dog may also prefer eating in a different location — whether it be because they do not like the metal clanking while eating or whether she prefers to eat on a carpet next to you.


Your dog may also just merely want a change of location while eating that day.


How To Train Your Dog To Stop Moving Their Bowl?

If you are frustrated having to constantly move their food bowl back in its original place, there are a few things you can do to tell your dog to stop.


While them playing with their bowls is not necessarily bad behavior, it may still be stressful to deal with it.


Here are some ways you can teach your dog not to do so:

  • Having a heavier bowl
  • Experimenting different areas
  • Confining him in an area while he eats
  • Don’t leave the bowl around after he has eaten
  • Give him treats when he does not carry it around
  • Feeding him at the same time will give him surety that he will be fed
  • Give him other toys to carry instead
  • Redirect his focus


It is important to see what triggers your dog to move his bowl around.


If your dog constantly moves the bowl to the same spot, try feeding him there instead.


Also, ensure that he is being fed enough — not too much and not too little.


If your dog moves his bowl due to anxiety, you should find out what causes his anxiety and try to limit possible reasons.


Reassuring your dog can help reduce his behavior too.


Overall Thoughts

There are various reasons as to why your dog may be carrying his bowl.


Paying attention and knowing why they do so can help you understand what they are telling you.


bowl play is a relatively normal activity for dogs.


However, if they are suddenly doing so, with other symptoms such as refusing to eat, there may be an underlying problem.


It is best to observe your dog and take them to the vet if it is worrying.


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A pet owner who loves to share useful facts and information about a variety of animals.