Dogs chase after toys, bones, small animals—you name it. This age-old habit is a survival instinct. Wild dogs need to be good hunters in order to chase food all the way down to a full belly.
That’s why the urge to chase things is known as prey drive. Our domesticated pups have retained this drive—some to a higher degree than others. If your restless retriever won’t give you a break, you may need to embrace the enthusiasm, because prey drive is part of a dog’s hereditary makeup.
Breeds such as the German Shepherd and English Cocker Spaniel that are used in police work and hunting tend to have a high prey drive. So if you’re looking for a couch potato canine companion, do your research before selecting a pooch.