Do dogs really choose their owners? A Comprehensive Guide

A dog that loves you will likely recognize your name — and be visibly excited when they hear it.

Do dogs really choose their owners?

Its not a surprise that pets can learn their own names, but many dogs will also respond to the names of their owners.

Jamie Richardson, veterinarian and medical chief of staff at Small Door Veterinary, told Insider that dogs often get excited when the names of their favorite people are mentioned.

“Over time, dogs learn to recognize human names. If they hear a loved ones name mentioned who isnt present, theyll get excited at the thought that they might appear,” said Richardson.

This is an easy one. Dogs tend to bond with the people they spend the most time with. It’s the same way for humans. The more time we spend with someone, the more comfortable with them we’ll be. To take this a step further, dogs especially make connections when the people they spend time with give them lots of love and attention. That could relate to the person that’s home the most, or it could be the person most likely to snuggle with the dog on the couch Two months after we adopted Copper, my husband went on a five-month-long work trip. I work from home, so it was literally me and Copper together 24/7 with no one else around. He was a crazy beast back then, and I was the one that ran with him twice a day, trained him multiple times a day, and filled his food bowl. By the time my husband came back, he really didn’t have a chance. I was Copper’s whole world. Another thing to mention here is that it isn’t just about how much time a person spends with a dog. It’s also about the quality of that time. You can sit at home with your dog all day but never pay attention to them. But if you engage in one-on-one playtime and spend time cuddling your dog with no phone, TV, or other distractions, trust me, your dog will know the difference. how dogs choose their favorite humans

No matter what kind of dog you have, socialization is a huge part of their upbringing. And it also has a lot to do with how they choose their favorite humans. Dogs do a lot of learning between the time they’re born up until they’re around six months old. This is the time when their brains are especially receptive to new experiences. What they experience during this time frame can end up seriously impacting their entire lives. Behaviorist believe that this prime time for socialization can play a role in whom a dog connects with later in life. If a three-month-old puppy has a negative experience with a man, for example, it’ll be hard for them to bond with that man, or anyone who reminds them of that man, later in life. It’s the same the other way around. If a puppy has an amazing experience with someone during that tender age range, that feeling will stick with them and affect who they bond with later.

In my house, my dog Copper has always made it clear that I’m his person. Sure, he loves my husband. But he LOVES me with a capital L. If Copper and my husband are cuddling on the couch and I sit down, Copper will get up, leave my husband, and situate his 65 pounds in my lap. When my husband and I walk in the house after being gone for a few hours, Copper will run right past him to get to me. Copper’s unfailing affection toward me is thanks to a couple things. And if your dog has chosen you as their favorite–or even if they’ve chosen someone else–you’ll relate to these key factors that go into how a dog picks their person.

Another factor that goes in to how dogs choose their favorite humans is personality. As a human yourself, you know that you aren’t going to be best friends with everyone you meet. People (and dogs) are all different, and our closest friends tend to be people that we can easily relate to. Of course, there will always be exceptions, but have you ever met a dog that has the same personality as their human? An active, high-energy dog is more likely to bond with an equally active person than they are with someone who prefers a quieter lifestyle. The same goes for dogs that are more cautious or reserved. A loud, boisterous person will probably freak them out, so they gravitate toward people that match their own energy. dogs choose their favorite human

There are few things better than when your dog walks into a room full of people and heads straight for your lap. It’s like those other people don’t even exist, and your dog only has eyes for you. Your bond is so strong that you know without a doubt that you are your dog’s favorite human. This kind of strong bond doesn’t happen with every dog you meet, or even every dog you live with. But when a dog picks you, it’s an incredible feeling.

If your dog likes to gaze deeply into your eyes, it could mean they are attached to you.

Do dogs really choose their owners?

Rebecca Greenstein, veterinarian and medical advisor for Rover, told Insider that prolonged eye-gazing by dogs is an attempt at bonding.

“From the time they are puppies, dogs appear to be driven to establish eye contact with humans, which can be a marker of attachment,” said Greenstein.

Match the Dog to Their Owner | Lineup | Cut