Why Do Dogs Like Socks?

by Rob Hainer
    Socks work almost as well as pull toys for tug of war.

    Socks work almost as well as pull toys for tug of war.

    Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images

    While you like socks because they keep your tootsies warm, your pooch is more likely to chow down on stray socks than wear them. His goal isn't to keep you from having any matching pairs; instead, he's more interested in keeping himself occupied and fighting off feelings of loneliness. Your socks are magic tools that can do both those things for him.

    Texture

    That sock that feels soft and cushy on your foot meets the same need for your pup's mouth. Dogs enjoy biting, chewing and pulling on soft toys, and your socks make a handy and convenient option. A teething puppy needs soft chews to comfort his aching gums, and adult dogs enjoy the feeling of gnawing on the stretchy fabric.

    Boredom

    Your pooch doesn't have to dig very deep in the hamper -- or, perhaps look further than the floor beside the bed -- to find your socks and discover an instant playmate when he's bored. He can chew the sock, play tug-of-war with you or another dog, or shake the sock into submission. Socks also fly fairly well, resulting in an impromptu game of indoor fetch -- if you can stomach touching the sock after it's been on your foot and in his mouth.

    Separation Anxiety

    Dogs are social animals, and they miss you when you're gone. Some dogs experience social anxiety more than others, but most canine companions seek some sort of comfort when left alone. Your socks can serve as something of a security blanket. They smell strongly of you, bringing him joy and helping him feel less alone.

    Dangers

    Although socks can serve as inexpensive toys and help make your pup feel closer to you, they can also be dangerous. Dogs tend to eat much of what they chew, meaning they can bite off and swallow pieces of fabric. Even more dangerous is a dog who swallows the entire sock whole. Whether he eats pieces or the whole thing, the fabric can block his intestines and have you rushing him into emergency surgery to remove the blockage.

    Photo Credits

    • Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Rob Hainer began writing and editing for newspapers in 1992. He began his career as a photojournalist in the Army, and studied journalism at the University of Missouri. He worked as a copy editor and reporter at "The Marietta Daily Journal," the "Spartanburg Herald-Journal" and the "New Haven Register."

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