I noticed that when my roommates feed their puppy, the puppy will take a mouth full of the kibble (but not chew or swallow it), then walk away from his bowl, and drop the kibble on the ground. He will then walk around and eat each individual piece of kibble that he drops across the ground.

The kibble literally gets spread all across the room, and he wanders around eating all the individual pieces until it's all gone.

Why does the puppy do this? I'm not really concerned, because he eventually eats it all. I'm just curious as to what causes this behavior.

  • 1
    I wonder if he is playing with his food
    – Journeyman Geek
    Commented Apr 5, 2014 at 1:49
  • I've seen several dogs (olders ones too, not just puppies) and I don't really have an explanation. Commented Apr 5, 2014 at 9:31
  • Does the puppy live with other dogs or alone? My seven year old Pug does this as well, but I assumed that she picked up when she was living with two other dogs.
    – Discord
    Commented Apr 10, 2014 at 17:10
  • Right now the pup just lives with us and the cat. When he was younger our roommate explained that he was in competition with the other pups in his litter, so that may be it as well.
    – Nicole Rae
    Commented Apr 10, 2014 at 19:34
  • My one dog does this and will actually take it to the carpet to eat it.
    – EricSSH
    Commented Apr 14, 2014 at 22:33

4 Answers 4


I have seen dogs do this too. Animals sometime drag their kills off to protect their food from other animals. Feral cats will sometimes rip a hunk of meat of a carcass and run off with it to prevent other cats from taking it. Wolves and other animals often have an eating order and a lower ranking animal may try to steal a bit of food out of turn and run off with it to eat to avoid repercussions.

Your dog could be exhibiting an instinct along these lines. Also your dog may feel more secure in the area he is moving its food to. Maybe it is less open or more quiet.


My dog does the exact same thing. He would only eat food from the floor or from my hand.

I'm about to try another method. Keep the food in the bowl. If he doesn't eat it - it's OKAY. Make sure you're in a confined space such as an exercise pen and keep nothing but the food in front of him. Wait for about 15-20 minutes, encouraging him to eat as you go. If he doesn't eat much of it through this time period, it's totally okay. Pick up the bowl and give it to him later when his next feeding period starts. He will show more interest to the food when he's hungry.

If this doesn't work, try giving him small pieces of treats inside the bowl gradually. Give the puppy time and he's sure to learn!

Hope this helped!


My dog takes her food out of her dish one piece at a time and then goes all the way across the house to eats it. Then I have to persuade to to eat again. I did some research and there was some suggestion that she might be lonely and want to be by me and. I think that's what it might be because she's fine when I block her in by her dish. The she eats freely but she still seems a bit scared.

  • what was the link that you used. Could you also include the link?
    – Derrick K.
    Commented Oct 20, 2015 at 22:44

I have a Yorkshire Terrier. ALL Yorkshire Terriers eat their food away from the bowl, as far as I'm aware.

I can quote from a notable Yorkshire Terrier named Bobby-O:

"Now I must tell you that we Yorkshire Terriers are not like other dogs. I think I speak for us as a group when I say we don’t like to stand at a bowl to eat the kibbles. It just seems a little undignified. What I do is take one of the delicious bites, go to the living room, and get comfortable to eat it. Then I go back and get another bite, and back to the living room. That seems such a more leisurely and sophisticated way to eat your meal."

This is from the story, Bobby-O, on Kindle. Check it out.

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