The banana game... We have a ritual every morning in our house, and I've probably mentioned it before. We call it the “banana game”. A few years ago we discovered that our dogs (all four of them!) absolutely love bananas – and bananas are actually good for them. Sometime after that I started getting in the habit of feeding slices of a banana to them in the morning, right after I got up and went to the kitchen. I have a particular place in the kitchen where I stand to do this. It didn't take long for the dogs to associate me standing in that place with delicious banana treats descending from the sky. :)
But over time they've learned earlier and earlier indications that banana slices are imminent. First they learned that I would peel the banana in the kitchen sink, so they'd all sit next to me and watch, rapturously. Then they learned that I removed one banana from the bunch first, and they'd start getting excited if I just moved in the general direction of the banana bunch (and trust me, they know exactly where that is!). This morning I noticed a new observation on their part: they've learned that when I pull a steak knife out of its block in the morning, the next step is the banana separation. I think they may have reached the limit here, because so far as I know there's no earlier indicator in my banana slicing pattern. This morning I had four sets of doggie eyeballs watching my every move starting the moment I slid that steak knife out of the block and ending when I started tossing banana slices at them.
They have a similar sensitivity to my pattern of feeding them. It starts every morning when I pick up Mako and Cabo's food bowls – plain stainless steel bowls that we store on top of Mako's crate. The instant I pick those up, all four dogs know that there is kibble in their immediate future. Judging from their reaction, that's the highlight of their entire day! :)
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