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Do Dogs Have a Favorite Person in Your Household? Canine Bonding Facts

Written by: Misty Layne

Last Updated on June 4, 2024 by Dogster Team

owner petting a happy dog

Do Dogs Have a Favorite Person in Your Household? Canine Bonding Facts

If you have a dog and several people in your household, you’ve probably noticed that your pup tends to gravitate towards one person just a bit more than the others. Or you might have noticed your dog is obsessed with their dog sitter or your best friend and is always incredibly excited to see them when they visit. Does this mean that dogs can have a favorite person? And does your dog have a favorite person in your household?

The answer is yes! Most (although not all) dogs will have a favorite person in the household they want to hang out with just a bit more than the rest of the people in the home. This makes sense, though, as our canine pals are not only highly social creatures but also animals who depend on their humans to meet all their needs. Canine-human bonds tend to form quickly because of these things, and those bonds can become quite strong!

How do you know if you’re your pup’s favorite person in the house, and why do dogs form a stronger bond with one person over another?

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How Do Dogs Choose Their Favorite Person?

Why a dog chooses a person as their favorite partially comes down to the time and attention the human devotes to their pup, but that reason doesn’t make up the whole equation. Here are the main reasons dogs gravitate towards one person instead of another.

bulldog in towel comforted by owner embrace
Image Credit: JCM Photos, Shutterstock

1. Their Breed

Some dog breeds are simply hardwired to form a stronger bond with one particular person. A lot of the time, these breeds are the ones who were bred to work directly with humans, like herd dogs or guard dogs. Because they’ve worked so closely with humans throughout history, that instinct to form a strong bond is there, often translating to bonding with one person. These breeds include Border Collies, German Shepherds, Chihuahuas, and Beagles.

2. Early Socialization

From birth to the age of six months is the most formative time of a canine’s life. During this period, a puppy’s brain is soaking up everything around them, so if you’re their primary caregiver during this time, there’s a good chance they’ll form their strongest bond with you. It makes sense, too, that the person who plays with them most or feeds them during puppyhood ends up being the one they’re attached to. After all, you’re spending the most time with them, and being around you equals love, food, and attention; why wouldn’t you be their favorite person?

golden retriever dog leaning on its owner outdoor
Image Credit: trofalenaRV, Shutterstock

3. Attention Received

Another reason canines will bond more with one person than another is because their favorite human shows them lots of attention. It isn’t only the amount of attention a dog receives that cements this bond, though; it’s also the quality of that attention. If a person is spending quality time with a pup and playing with them, cuddling them, or giving them treats, that’s a lot of physical affection and attention. And that can really seal the deal for your dog!

4. Similar Personalities

Do you and any of your close friends have similar personalities? As much as opposites can attract, you’re more likely to hang out with people who match your personality in some way. Dogs have a tendency to do the same thing. So, if your pup is energetic and needs lots of activity, and you enjoy taking them out for hikes and other activities, your dog may bond with you most. Likewise, if a dog is more chill and less active, they’re more likely to spend time with whoever in the house is quieter or enjoys lounging.

Image Credit: brickrena, Shutterstock

5. Positive Associations

The more positive associations a dog makes with a person, the likelier that person will be their favorite. Positive associations can include being given food or treats, being taken to the dog park, going for long walks, or anything else a dog enjoys. So, if your pup has a lot of positive associations with you, you may be their favorite!

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How Do I Know if I’m My Dog’s Favorite Person?

a woman playing with her pomaranian dog that is standing on her lap
Image Credit: Gorodenkoff, Shutterstock

Your furry friend may not be able to tell you that you’re their favorite person, but there are definite signs you’ll notice if you are.

You’ve probably heard the term “Velcro dog”; if you are your dog’s favorite person, they may turn into a bit of a Velcro dog with you. What does that mean exactly? It means your pup will follow you everywhere you go in the house. Going to wash dishes? Your pup will be standing there with you. Taking a trip to the bathroom? So is your dog! If you’re your dog’s favorite, they won’t want to let you out of their sight.

Other signs your dog has chosen you as their favorite include:

  • Wanting to play with you more
  • Sleeping near you most often
  • Being super excited when you get home from work
  • Bringing you gifts, such as their favorite toy

dogster paw dividerFinal Thoughts

Most dogs will have a favorite person in the household. Who becomes their favorite occurs for several reasons, like who spent the most time with them during the first six months of their life or who they have the most positive associations with. Don’t fret if you aren’t your canine’s favorite person, though! Your dog still loves you tons; they just have a tiny bit of a stronger bond with someone else.

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Featured Image Credit: Bachkova Natalia, Shutterstock

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