You may find some socks missing and sometimes see your Golden Retriever carrying your socks. Why do they like socks so much?
Why do Golden Retrievers love socks?
Golden Retrievers are lovable goofballs that love to carry socks and other items. This is one of their favorite things to do because these items have your scent. In addition, Goldens enjoy carrying socks since they are light and tend to feel soft.
We spoke to expert vets and dog trainers about this behavior in length to understand it. They explained that Golden Retrievers love socks and other soft fuzzy items, and it’s common to find them missing.
Why is My Golden Retriever Obsessed with My Socks?
Socks are important because they can keep your feet warm and cozy. They also make wearing shoes easier and more comfortable. Well, as much as you like your socks, there’s someone else with the same affection.
Golden Retrievers love socks, so it’s not uncommon to find them carrying your socks around the house. Let’s find out why golden retrievers love socks.
Socks are Soft
You love socks because they’re made using soft and comfy material. Wearing them feels nice and protects your feet.
Well, your adorable Golden Retriever may not wear the socks, but they enjoy them. Often you find your dog playing or chewing on your socks.
This is because they’re made with soft material that feels wonderful and is easy to carry.
There’s no way your pup will leave soft, cozy socks to carry another heavy item around the house. At times they might, but mostly they will opt for soft socks that are also light.
Chewing Socks Feels Nice
Some of the best chew toys are made using material that’s similar to that on socks. This is one of the reasons your dog may take your pair. If you have a pair of socks set to look like a ball, they will think it’s something to play with.
Chewing on socks is comfortable and won’t harm their mouths. This is why you even find puppies having a jolly time with your favorite socks.
Your buddy enjoys chewing on socks because it’s a great way to pass the day. They also feel less stressed and can even engage in a tug-of-war with other home pets.
It’s All About the Scent
Anything that reminds your dog of you is a good thing. Since your socks have your scent, it’s easy to see why your Golden Retriever loves them.
It’s common for them to take dirty socks that haven’t gone through the wash cycle. These are the best since your scent is thick and comforts your Golden Retriever.
Familiar human scent is important for your dog since it helps strengthen your bond. Even if you aren’t around, they can still feel you’re close and find comfort when they have your socks.
Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, did a study involving 12 dogs. Gregory Berns and his team wanted to research familiar scents and how dogs respond to them. They were especially focused on the part of the brain that is active when this happens.
The dogs got to experience 5 different scents. These included their own scent, owners’ scent, unfamiliar person, and dog.
The most brain activity was proven when all dogs came into contact with their owner’s scent and knew who they were.
Did you know that a condition causes dogs to crave non-food items? This is known as Pica and causes your dog to chew on items like clothes, shoes, cardboard, and even seats.
There are two causes of Pica, mostly behavioral or health. If you notice your Golden Retriever may have Pica, it’s time to visit the vet.
They can help you devise a treatment plan to get rid of Pica.
Socks are Everywhere
It’s unlike Golden Retrievers to trace where you keep the dirty laundry and find your socks. But, most likely, they won’t.
Most of the time, you leave your socks in areas where your dog can have easy access. For example, taking them off at the door when you come in.
If you take too long to pick them up and put the socks in the laundry basket, they become an ‘easy game.’ So, it’s better to remove and store dirty socks, a favorite of dogs, when you get home.
It’s Play Time
Have you been getting ready to do the laundry and had your socks stolen? This will initiate a stern ‘no!’ and a chase.
In such instances, your Golden Retriever wants your attention. They want playtime and won’t mind even if you’re getting ready to do the laundry.
From experience, when they take the socks from the pile or laundry hamper, you chase them. So, that action becomes a fun moment for you to go after your Golden Retriever to get the socks!
How Can I Avoid Losing My Socks to My Golden Retriever?
Truthfully, you can’t keep losing socks to your Golden Retriever every day. This is because they will chew on the socks and leave holes. So, what are the best ways to prevent your socks from landing as chew toys?
Pick Up Your Clothes
Leaving dirty socks and clothes around invites your Golden Retriever to chew on them. Socks are so alluring that they find it hard to avoid your scent.
So, you end up with holes in all the socks that your dog finds.
It’s better to put them in a laundry basket in the laundry room, away from easy access. Also, on laundry day, ensure your dog is nowhere near when you’re separating and sorting the clothes.
Buy Chew Toys
The soft and light material on socks is another reason your dog loves them. They find it not only comfortable but also soothing.
If you want the behavior of stealing your socks to stop, make sure your dog has their toys. There are now amazing toy collections made using the same soft material.
A good way to make your dog love the toys more is to have your scent on them. Find creative ways to do this, which will have the same comforting effect on your pets.
Discourage the Behavior
Golden Retrievers must learn that stealing and chewing dirty socks is unacceptable. One way to do this is to make sure you train them.
Discouraging the behavior from the start is a great strategy. It establishes discipline from when they’re pups knowing what is acceptable and what isn’t.
When they drop the sock after telling them to stop, give them the treat to show that’s good behavior.
Visit the Vet
If you come across chunks of socks missing, maybe your dog has swallowed them. Pica is a condition that causes dogs to eat non-food items such as socks. These aren’t digestible and can lead to loads of health issues.
So, it’s better to book a vet appointment to remove the foreign object in the body.
Plan for Exercise
Boredom can lead to loads of trouble with Golden Retrievers. This active breed requires regular exercise to get rid of pent-up energy.
It’s therefore important to plan for exercise every day. If you aren’t at home for a specific period, let’s say a week or two, hire a pet sitter.
This is because boredom often leads to destructive behavior, like getting into the laundry basket to get socks.
This is easy to counter by going on regular walks and playing at the dog park. You can also let them outside in the backyard to run around.
- Golden Retrievers love playing with socks.
- Dirty socks are a favorite for many dogs since they have your scent.
- Dogs can suffer from Pica, which causes them to eat non-food items.
- It’s important to discourage playing with and chewing socks from an early age.
- Always make sure your Golden Retriever gets ample exercise each day.