Why Are Our Dogs So Loyal?

Loyalty from our canine companions is unquestioned. There are countless stories of how our dogs stick with us through thick and thin. 

But the question remains, why are our dogs so loyal?

The easy answer (which would be wrong by the way!) is that we provide them with food, water and shelter so naturally they are loyal in return. But we provide these same things to other animals but they just don’t show the same intensity of loyalty that comes from our canine companions.

Our relationship with dogs goes back tens of thousands of years and has allowed an incredible bond to form between our two species. 

Dogs are just naturally pack animals and it’s this pack mentality that drives a dog’s loyalty to his human pack. In the wild, a pack is successful and strong because the members depend on one another and are loyal to each other and their tribe. This behavior is translated over to our dogs’ relationship with us.

The scientific research is clear. Dogs are emotionally bonded with us and we with them. But as a dog owner, you knew that all along didn’t you?

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By Ellen Britt

Dr. Ellen Britt has loved dogs since she was a child. She is particularly fond of the Northern breeds, especially Alaskan Malamutes. Ellen worked as a PA in Emergency and Occupational Medicine for two decades and holds a doctorate (Ed.D.) in biology.

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