Does a dog understand the bedtime concept?

N & I have been observing (and some experiments) for some time if Kiko understand the concept of "bedtime". 

Our routine when it's time to go to bed is to switched off the lights, and calling him to go back to his crate. When he was much younger, a lot of coaxing had to be done, which included carrying him straight into his crate. And on some other nights, he would be reluctant to return to his crate, instead running around the living room and eventually hiding in his favourite hideout "dog house". We had to "extricate" him from the hideout and put him back to his crate. 

Earlier on, there were few nights when we tried switching off the lights, and we went straight to our bedroom without telling him to return to his crate, or carrying him back to his crate. Then we secretly observe him if he would figure out it's bedtime and return to his crate. It was hilarious to observe his reaction! He had the puzzled look trying to figure out what he should do. He stepped into the crate, sat on his pillow, expecting us to close the door of the crate. But after moments of waiting and we were nowhere to be seen, he came out and walking around the living room. After looking at the hilarious but failed experiment, we had to came out of hiding and put him back into the crate. 

Like I said, that was much earlier on.

Last night, we decided to try again. I don't know if it was coincidence, or Kiko could've sensed it. Once we mentioned we were going to test him, and starting getting up from the couch to switch off the lights, that little dog miraculously walked himself back into his crate, and sat himself on the pillow waiting for us to lock him up!

We did not lock him up straightaway, but went into the kitchen where N decided to have a quick slice of watermelon in the fridge. Kiko heard the juicy biting sound, he listened closely while still sitting in his crate, but after sensing that we're not going to bed yet, he jumped out of his crate and straight to the kitchen. He was circling N's legs, hoping to get a bite of his favourite watermelon. What a "tam chiak" (everything also want to eat) dog! 

Kiko did not get any bite, but like any loyal and obedient dog, he still returned to his crate when we switched off the kitchen lights.

Experiment was a success :)


AquaMax said...

remember the food and bell experiment in our secondary bio?
It is just reflex system.
'Pavlov's Dog' it is..

firethorn said...

haha yeah...we figured that out. Kiko will "understand" as we repeat certain actions/routine/commands many times.

And I must chihuahuas are a clever breed! They are fast learners :-)

Related Posts with Thumbnails