Back in 2015, BuzzFeed was on the “Horrifying Stories Of Animals Eating Their Owners” train. You’d think that kind of thing could be a problem in Westeros, where direwolves and dragons have everything they need to tear into human flesh. Happily, the Huffington Post is here to tell us that Drogon probably didn’t eat Daenerys’ corpse after he flew off with it in the series finale. Probably.
The Post talked to Dr. Carolyn Rando, a forensic anthropologist at the UCL Institute of Archaeology, an expert on this sort of thing, and apparently the same person BuzzFeed talked to back in the day. “I think [the idea that Drogon would eat Dany is] fair,” she explained. “And I think we can’t discount it. But maybe it’s me just being wishful thinking that he wouldn’t actually eat her.”
At the birth, it was the first thing they saw. The first thing they would have seen was her. So I think that imprinting is really strong. And if you look at animal studies in zoos, where they’re trying to raise animals to go back into the wild, they’ll use puppets and things that look like the animal that they are so that they don’t imprint on people. So I think it’s probably down to really strong imprinting. This is my parent, and I need to protect them.
Rando confirms that, alarmingly, cats and dogs will eat their owners after death — whether because of hunger, instinct, or something else — but points out that dragons aren’t like cats or dogs. To start, they’re smarter, and don’t eat raw meat; they roast it before they eat it, something we see in the show. Sure, he could have carried Dany’s body off somewhere to flash-fry it, but if he were going to do that, you’d figure he’d do it while he was burning the Iron Throne. Dragons don’t seem like they’d be down for delayed gratification. Rando suggests that if it were a meal Drogon was after, he should have just gone for Jon, who was right there.
On the other hand, Drogon did just burn down a city and was probably pretty hungry from the effort. Also, he was showing the “attention getting” behavior — nuzzling Dany’s body — that can sometimes lead to biting. Best not to think about it.
As for theories about what Drogon actually did with Dany, roosting on Dragonstone seems like an option, but with Bran looking for him out east, he probably took her to over to Essos, possibly to Valyria. Or maybe he took her to find a Red Priestess…?