Background: Patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) may experience postprandial symptom exacerbation. Nutrients stimulate intestinal release of glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1), an incretin hormone with known gastrointestinal effects. However, prior to the postprandial rise in GLP-1, levels of the hunger hormone, ghrelin, peak. The aims of this study were to determine if ghrelin sensitizes colonic intrinsic and extrinsic neurons to the stimulatory actions of a GLP-1 receptor agonist, and if this differs in a rat model of IBS. Methods: Calcium imaging of enteric neurons was compared between Sprague Dawley and Wistar Kyoto rats. Colonic contractile activity and vagal nerve recordings were also compared between strains. Key Results: Circulating GLP-1 concentrations differ between IBS subtypes. Mechanistically, we have provided evidence that calcium responses evoked by exendin-4, a GLP-1 receptor agonist, are potentiated by a ghrelin receptor (GHSR-1) agonist, in both submucosal and myenteric neurons. Although basal patterns of colonic contractility varied between Sprague Dawley and Wister Kyoto rats, the capacity of exendin-4 to alter smooth muscle function was modified by a GHSR-1 agonist in both strains. Gut-brain signaling via GLP-1–mediated activation of vagal afferents was also potentiated by the GHSR-1 agonist. Conclusions & Inferences: These findings support a temporal interaction between ghrelin and GLP-1, where the preprandial peak in ghrelin may temporarily sensitize colonic intrinsic and extrinsic neurons to the neurostimulatory actions of GLP-1. While the sensitizing effects of the GHSR-1 agonist were identified in both rat strains, in the rat model of IBS, underlying contractile activity was aberrant.