Why Do Dogs Bring You Toys? Understanding The Behaviour

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Author: Jeanette Hampton

Every time when you come back to your home you’re greeted by your furry friend with exciting enthusiasm. Some dogs welcome their owners by wagging their tails and licking their owners, and others might jump on their owners or whine at them in greeting. Ever noticed, your dog also might bring his/her toy in its mouth?

If you’re a dog owner and have a dog that likes to offer toys to you when you come back home, you may wonder why your dog behaves like this. In this article, we will discuss in detail the reasons “Why do dogs bring you toys?” Read on to find out.

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Why do Dogs Bring You Toys?

Dog running with toys
alexei_tm – Shutter Stock

As we know dogs cannot talk and it seems to be impossible to have a definitive answer to this behaviour. If a dog brings you a toy, it is common and there are many theories about this action. Some of the possible reasons for this behaviour include:

1. They Want to Play

Dogs love to play with toys. In fact, one common behaviour you may notice is your dog shaking or tossing around a toy. This leads to the question – why do dogs shake their toys? A common reason that dogs bring their owner’s toys is that they want to play. Dogs are social creatures that love to play with humans. Mostly all dog breeds are playful and energetic and do not prefer to lay around for long periods. If your dog brings you their toys or leash, it wants you to engage with them in play or a walk.

2. They Are Greeting You

 It is common that when you come home from work and are greeted by your dog, wagging its tail, and carrying a toy, it’s their way of telling you that they’ve missed you! 

3. They Show Affection

Dogs bring their toys to show their affection. Just as humans might give their loved ones a gift to show them how much we care, dogs also do the same thing with their favourite toys. It’s likely because they want to show you how much they love and care for you.

4. They Want Attention

Dogs can sense when their owners are busy. If you’ve been ignoring your dog or haven’t had much time for them lately, they may try to get your attention by bringing you a toy.

5. They’re Introducing You to Their Toy

For almost all dogs, their favourite toy is a special part of their life that they want to share with their owner. By bringing you their favourite toy, they’re hoping you’ll also play with it along with your dog.

6. It’s their Inherited Behavior:

It is in the dog’s very nature to want to please you and put a smile on your face. It is a quality that has made them excellent companions to humans. Bringing you their toys is a part of that.

What Should You Do When Your Pup Brings You a Toy?

Dog with toys
Olga Aniven – Shutter Stock

1. Pay Them Attention

All dogs deserve attention and love. Make sure you give your furry friend enough attention whenever you get some free time. As they usually get bored in the house alone when you’re out at work.

2. Play With Them

Whenever they bring you toys, make sure you play with them. As dogs need to channel their energy into multiple physical activities, one of them is playing with toys. You can engage your dog’s mind and energy by using interactive toys like the best dog puzzle toys uk

3. Don’t reward them with treats

Don’t make your dog think they only get rewards when they bring you toys. This institutes a very negative habit, and dogs will tend to take advantage if you continue to provide them with treats.

4. Be Extra Careful with Their Favourite Toy

If your dog brings you their favourite toy to play with, it is important that you do not break it or cause any sort of damage to it. As your dog has entrusted you with its favourite toy.

5. Make Sure Your Dog Doesn’t Show Too Much Possessiveness of the Toy

While playing with your dog’s toy, if your dog shows too much possessiveness toward it, it’s better to discontinue playing along.

Is It Normal That Your Dog Brings You Toys?

“Why do dogs bring you toys?” is a common question among pet owners. It’s a behaviour that dogs engage in for various reasons, such as seeking attention or as a way of initiating playtime with their owners. However, it’s important to note that regardless of the reason behind this behaviour, dogs should not be punished for it.

In fact, it’s a behaviour that is worth encouraging since it’s friendly and can help reassure your dog during times of stress. So if your furry friend brings you a toy, feel free to play along and show them some love and attention!


Why is my dog carrying a toy in his mouth and whining?

Generally, whining while holding a toy is a sign of excitement and a way for your dog to try to get your attention. They probably want you to grab the toy and throw it for them, or play tug-of-war with them

What does it mean when your dog carries a toy around?

Just like children, even dogs love to carry a certain toy around, it probably just indicates that they love that toy. Much like children like to carry their favourite toys around and bring them everywhere they go, dogs like to do the same.

Why does my dog throw his toy in the air?

Wild dogs sometimes throw their food into the air before eating it. So, it is quite common that even your dog might do with its toy. It may also be just to gain your attention, as your dog may be bored and want to play with you. In any case, your dog’s not crazy, they just want to have fun.

Why do dogs bring their toys and then run away?

Dogs take items and run they find it really amusing. Taking toys provides an immediate reward because he has found something to play with. When you chase your dog, it makes your dog even happier.

Do dogs get emotionally attached to their toys?

Toys tend to satisfy an instinct in dogs. Many dogs, particularly hunting dogs, enjoy squeaky toys because they sound like their prey when they jump and tear them.


In this article, we have discussed “Why do dogs bring you toys?” in detail. As mentioned above, there are a number of different reasons why dogs bring their toys to you. It may be to communicate with you, share their favourite toy with you, or show you how much they trust you. Therefore, it’s important that you pay enough attention to what your dog is trying to tell you.

If your dog tends to destroy their toys regularly, especially when left alone, read our article on why do dogs destroy toys to better understand this behaviour.


  1. Sung, M. W. S., PhD. (2022, August 25). Why Do Dogs Bring You Their Toys to Greet You? PetMD. Retrieved January 19, 2023, from
  2. Seraphin, J. (2022, May 3). Why do dogs bring you toys when they greet you? Retrieved January 19, 2023, from
  3. Erb, H. (2019, January 19). Ask Our Trainers: Why Does My Dog Hoard? American Kennel Club. Retrieved January 19, 2023, from
  4. NCBI – WWW Error Blocked Diagnostic. (n.d.-b). Retrieved January 19, 2023, from
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Jeanette Hampton
Jeanette Hampton is a content writer at WWD and an expert on all things pets. She’s been writing pet blogs for over 5 years and knows everything there is to know about dogs. Jeanette enjoys writing about pet-related topics because she enjoys helping people learn more about their furry friends.

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