Do Dogs Have a Sense of Humor?

by Sundays

Our pups can definitely makes us laugh, but are they in on the joke?

There are probably plenty of times when you’ve accused someone of not having a sense of humor. But have you ever wondered whether dogs have a sense of humor? Can some dogs have a sense of humor, and others not?

We’d all like to think that our pups do funny things and kid around just to make us laugh, or that they even think we’re funny sometimes. Let’s find out just how true that is.

What Does It Mean for Dogs to Have a Sense of Humor?

First, we need to know exactly what we mean by a dog “having a sense of humor.” It’s hard to even explain what it means for humans, and we all know we don’t share the same sense of humor. 

Dogs are without a doubt playful–some dogs more than others–but a sense of humor goes beyond this. You could say it’s knowing that something is funny, or doing something that you know someone else will think is funny. Or it could be playing a joke on someone. 

So, Can Dogs Have a Sense of Humor?

Well, we think they do. And if we asked you if your dog had a sense of humor, what would you say? Most pet parents would probably say, of course, and they’d have tons of stories to prove it. 

For instance, if your dog likes to pick up a toy and run away from you while wiggling their rear end happily and looking over their shoulder with a mischievous gleam in their eyes, you would definitely say that’s a sense of humor. Your pup finds it funny to make you chase them. 

So the recipe for having a sense of humor seems to be a little playfulness mixed with a little bit of mischief. Even Charles Darwin agreed that dogs have this. In his book, “The Descent of Man,” he wrote: 

“Dogs show what may be fairly called a sense of humor, as distinct from mere play; if a bit of stick…be thrown to one, he will often carry it away for a short distance; and then squatting down with it on the ground close before him, will wait until his master comes quite close to take it away. The dog will then seize it and rush away in triumph, repeating the same maneuver, and evidently enjoying the practical joke.”

Do Some Dog Breeds Have a Bigger Sense of Humor?

Some people seem to have a bigger sense of humor than others. The same can be said for dogs–one dog’s personality can be more playful than another’s. Or in more general terms, we can say that there are certain breeds that are known to be more playful than others.

Don’t worry if your dog isn’t on this list–a dog’s breed is definitely not THE determining factor on whether or not they have a sense of humor. 

The most playful breeds tend to be:

Does Your Dog Have a Sense of Humor?

Remember that dog humor might be different from people humor. So they might think something is hilarious but you might not get the joke. But most of the time, you can tell when a dog is doing something to be funny. They seem to know when they are playing a joke or how to get a laugh from us. 

Because you know each other so well, you and your dog know how to make each other smile and laugh, and you just might have the same sense of humor. Try playing little tricks or doing things to make your dog smile. And look for ways that your dog tries to get you to laugh.

The more you play with your pup, the more you will bring out their unique sense of humor. There may not be any 100% scientific way to prove that your dog does indeed have a sense of humor, but the proof is in your dog’s antics and how much they make you laugh.

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