Is It Instinct? Or what?

Ahh...I've got a nice little treat here (because I'm such a GOOD BOY!) that needs to be buried. Under this tree looks like a good place.

Yep. This is a good place. Let me just get it all nice and snug under here.

Time to tamp it all down in there. Nice a snug. My nose comes in handy for this kind of work.

There. My nice little piece of cheese-flavored rice cake. Right there in the dirt. Where I carefully placed it.

You know, I don’t really know why I bury things. I walk all over the place looking for nice spots to put things. Like rice cakes, pig ears, cow hooves and stuff. Wonder why I do that? The only things I go back and actually find are the cow hooves and pig ears. Mostly the cow hooves, though.  I take so much time and care to use my nose to move dirt and grass, then cover things up and pat them down. Nice and neat. Who taught me to do that?

Is that instinct? I mean, I left home at 10 weeks. My mother didn’t teach me these things. My siblings and breeders totally ignored me. Heck, I had to learn to play for heaven’s sake. Nobody taught me that either. (I had a hard time as a child.)

I also “back step” in the grass after I’ve answered the call of nature. (She calls that “flushing the toilet.”)

Wonder why I do that, too? Is that instinct? Like lifting my leg to pee? (She cried the first time I did that as a pup. “My baby boy’s a man!” Yeah, oh brother….) How did I know to do all these things?

I think I’ll ponder that today. You ponder it, too, and let’s see what we come up with.

What You Learned Today:

  • Wonder why I know to do things?
  • Like bury stuff.
  • Lift my leg.
  • And backstep.
  • OH… and bark at the mailman. That must be instinctive, too.

About The Scottie Chronicles

Winston welcomes you to The Scottie Chronicles - a blog that began in 2009 as a voice for Stuart, a more than memorable black, brindle and white Scottish Terrier who captured hearts around the world. Stuart passed suddenly in December 2015 from cardiac hemangiosarcoma, a nasty cancer that took him far too early. If you love Scotties, please follow along. Arroooo!
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36 Responses to Is It Instinct? Or what?

  1. Scout says:

    Stuart, you crack me up! But you bring up some good points! My Dad’s Scottie does this – in the house! She hides treats in the corners, under pillows, etc. My Scottie doesn’t do that though and I wonder if it’s because she has a sister (a big yellow lab) that would probably go around and “find” everything right away. Whether it’s instinct or what Stuart – I think it’s so flipping adorable that you guys do that. Who cares why. hee hee.

  2. Kyla says:

    I don’t do this-all kinds of critters here (buzzards included) and the biggest thief of all, Kenzie. I don’t waste food by saving it for later-it may not be there. By “back step” do you mean the Scottie Shuffle where you run in place. I gotta watch where I do that-it doesn’t feel so wonderful if I do it on the crushed rock.

  3. rottrover says:

    We aren’t patient enough to hide things and only do it if we’re sick. We admire your restraint! We just read the story of your life BP (Before Peeps). Our Angel Sister Allie came from a breeder and she was so pretty and smart that they were just going to breed her until Dad HAD to have her and (browbeat) talked the woman into selling Allie to him. She never really learned how to play, was shy around new people. Butt she LOVED all dogs, and our Peeps, and she did a great job of raising Gizmo and me when we were pups. Have a great week, Stuart!

    -Bart (and Ruby, too)

  4. Susie & Sidebite says:

    Very interesting facts, we don’t bury things, never have, never will, its just to good to waste for some bird, rabbit, mouse or other critter to dig up. The tummy is our storage area. Far as that potty thing, Sidebite does the Scottie Shuffle backing up thing and barks, wonder if thats his backup alarm, me just bend down do my business and off on some other great adventure chasing stuff or sleeping.

  5. Marcella and Amelia says:

    It’s instinct Stewart, Amelia and I do the same things and mom and dad think we are so cute.

    I have a question for you though. Amelia backsteps grass onto her own back and sometimes right into my face. I’ll tell you this, she’s even whirled around and backstepped grass onto my mom. Is that instinct or are we in the wrong place at the wrong time or is Amelia bonkers?


    • OH!!! I’ve done the same thing, too. Backstepped grass and mud right into Their teacups/mugs on our morning walk. Not a good idea….I don’t think Amelia’s crazy. In fact, I don’t think there IS such a thing as a crazy Scottie!

      Aroo, Stuart

  6. Abigail says:

    Love the new look

  7. edgar says:

    i do all those same things too, stuart. i don’t bury my treats though – only bones, and chewy things that i can’t gobble up right then and there. i like to hide them for when i get bored, they will be right there. but (shhh, don’t tell anyone this-i don’t life my leg to pee…never have)


  8. Cally says:

    Boy Stuart, you’re lucky you don’t have a big sister to dig up your stuff. I mostly hide my stuff upstairs in Mom’s sewing room because Bridget hardly ever goes up there. Otherwise, I wait until she’s not looking and hope she doesn’t find where I put it. (Of course, it doesn’t count when I find her stuff!). Sometimes our Mom has to be what she calls “the BIG Alpha” and hide stuff from both of us if we get too “persnickety” and give each other the evil eye. You know, whatever the other dog has is always the best thing even if we both have exactly the same thing!!!

    • I don’t think I’d be a good partner in hiding crime! Nice to hear from you!

      Arooo! Stu

    • Marcella and Amelia says:

      Cally, this is a sore subject for my big sis, Amelia. When mom gives us anything, I naturally want both things, but Amelia only wants mine because she thinks it’s better. She doesn’t realize it’s the same thing, just like you said. When mom leaves the room, Amelia rushes me and makes me switch. My favorite thing to do is eat as much as I can before the switch, that way I get more than my share. All’s fair in Love and Pig Ears, right? I love my big sis but I think my strategy is much better than hers.

      • Marcella and Amelia says:

        Ooops, I forgot to sign my last post.
        Love and Pig Ears,

      • Scout says:

        Cally, Great Minds Think Alike – this sounds like my household. I do this to my big sis all the time and she just lays there and let’s me take her treats (hey, it’s all part of Terrier Law). She’s the bestest…. however… if the parental figures see this I get scolded for it… : ( Hey, I figure survival of the fittest…

      • THIS is why I don’t live with a sibling. Or another 4-legged friend. I don’t think it would be pretty.

        Aroooo! Stuart

  9. Jazzi says:

    I dont and have not ever buried anything. I dont know why just have never thought about it. Its cool that you budy things and save them fur later!!


  10. Lee says:

    Stuart are you stocking up for the end of the Mayan Calendar burying all those things?
    I lift my leg high, I think I do that to stop from getting the splash back. And I flush the tiolet also.
    Sweet William the Scot

  11. Daisy says:

    I used to bury my bone straight away and then sit close to Kendra while she had her’s hoping to get both of them. But I learned it’s better to eat things quickly or some other dog will get it.

    We have an eat-it-quickly-and-ask-questions-later policy here.

    But we think most of the things you mentioned are instinct….or maybe you’re just a genius.

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

  12. Noodledog says:

    I take my bone, dig a very small hole, push a little dirt on the bone with my nose, then put my nose on the bone, then spin spin around it, keeping my nose on the bone, while I growl at the bone. Then I shake my entire body, and walk away. The bone always stays where I put it. Unless that Mom person moves it.

  13. Bonny Rose says:

    I do this burying thing with only the most special of treats. I’ll look all around the house for the best place, and even though there isn’t any dirt to dig or cover it with, I do try. Then if the place doesn’t seem quite right (which is often) I’ll move the treat to another spot, and another spot, and, well, maybe another one. I don’t know why, I just like to keep moving it around. Sometimes if I can’t find the very best spot I get anxious and will whine til my mom takes my treat and puts it up for awhile.
    As far as the other thing goes, I don’t shuffle but I squat AND sometimes (gasp!) I lift my leg. Sorta’ weird for a girl but, that’s what I do.

    • Hey Bonny Rose – Are you a Scottie? Just curious. You know, I do the same thing. I’ll move it around and look for just the right spot. AND, you’ll be pleased to know that I have a few girlfriends who squat AND cock their little legs to pee. Huum….. Wonders never cease.

      Arooo! Stuart

  14. Noodledog says:

    well, my nose might come off the bone a little, but tall man says I have rear wheel drive and I am the Queen Scottie when it comes to spinning. If mom could figure out the camera, I could show you

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