Senior Labrador Choosing Which Toy to Take on Vacation Delights Internet

An elderly Labrador choosing which stuffed animal he wants to take on vacation is melting hearts online.

In a video posted to TikTok by user @staceymichellebra on Sunday, Marley the Labrador slowly walks over to his toy box. After thinking about it for a few seconds, he chooses his bear, carrying it away with him.

TikTok users were delighted by the footage, describing Marley and his teddy friend as "adorable," and the clip has received more than 5,000 likes and 104,000 views.

Brown labrador resting its head on teddy
A stock photo of a senior brown Labrador resting its head on a teddy's belly. TikTok users couldn't get enough of Marley and his bear, calling him "adorable." JanelleLugge/iStock/Getty Images Plus

A study published in June 2022 in the journal Animal Cognition found that dogs use multiple senses to find their favorite toys, giving them the edge in hide and seek.

Past studies have shown that dogs use a combination of sight and smell to find items, but scientists at Eotvos Lorand University in Budapest, Hungary, discovered that "gift-worded learners" or GWLs can also understand the names of objects. They can not only recognize items they have already encountered, but also distinguish them from similar objects based on verbal labels.

Researchers found that dogs mentally "record" the features of an item in a similar way to humans, creating a "multisensory image." For example, this process allows them to find their favorite toys in the dark based on smell, or for blind dogs to find the ball when playing fetch. In the case of GWLs, they can also recall the object based on name alone, giving them an advantage.

'Good Boy'

In the clip, Marley's owner, Stacey, asks him: "What teddy do you want to take on holiday?

"Go and choose a teddy from your toy box. You can take one."

Marley then wanders over to his toy box, and after briefly contemplating and giving his toys a sniff, he goes for his teddy bear.

"You're going to take your bear. Come on then," says Stacey. "Are you sure now, you definitely want that one?" she asks as he carries his teddy away in his mouth.

TikTok users couldn't get enough of Marley and his bear, with Donna Sewards describing the clip as "beautiful."

"Oh bless him," wrote user9310218541760. "This is so lovely," while mrsminmin commented, "What a good boy he is."

"That was adorable I love him," wrote Debra Atkinson603.

Fellow pet owners found the scene relatable, comparing their own dogs to Marley.

"I'm so glad I'm not the only one who's golden Labrador had a massive toy box," commented Jo Webster, while Tracy Ruth Miller wrote, "Buster is going on his hols soon, it'll be rabbit for him."

TikToker karkar commented: "My lab is just the same! Won't come up on the sofa until she has one with her!"

Marley isn't the only dog that takes his toys on vacation. Earlier in 2022, a collie called Baxter delighted TikTok users by taking his favorite toy on a trip to visit "grandma," while a hound named Bennett was dubbed "the kindest dog ever" for making sure all of his toys have food and water.

Newsweek has reached out to @staceymichellebra for comment.

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