Mila loves food.
Knowing that, it shouldn’t really have surprised me to come home after work yesterday to discover that she had devised a way of getting into the food cupboard in the kitchen and managed to eat a half bag of dog jerky, the remaining chocolate drops, at least one Tux biscuit and some of her regular food. She even managed to get her nose to the back of the cupboard where some very old (and long forgotten) catnip treats were sitting from back when we experimented with having a cat!
Needless to say, there was packaging everywhere. Bags were torn apart and left on the kitchen floor and the food containers now have large bite marks in them from her (eventually successful) attempts to get to what is inside. Thankfully, our housemate was around to clean up most of the mess, but there was evidence of Mila’s binge still about when we got home. Unfortunately, I was so busy trying to focus on not flying off the handle that I completely forgot to take photos of the scene!
Mila of course, was feeling a little sorry for herself and (I would like to think) a bit guilty. She lay on the couch with her head on her paws, looking drowsy eyed and a little wired as we cleaned up around her, avoiding eye contact with us for fear of getting growled. We kept an eye on her to make sure that a trip to the Vet wasn’t necessary but otherwise, the order of the day was to ignore her and let her think about what she’d done. A bit optimistic maybe, but it gave us all a chance to calm down.
Later in the night, the urgent need to clear her bowels of all that she had eaten got too much and despite the fact that we made sure the back door was open and gave her ample opportunity to toilet outside, we found a larger-than-normal pile of dog poo sitting proudly on the carpet in the middle of the lounge at about 9.30pm. The husband was furious and left the room grumbling about stupid Greyhounds. Trying not to gag from the smell, I was left to clean up the little mountain Mila had left for us.
When we are around, Mila is usually very good with food. She will eat pretty much anything we give her, the odd snack of raw carrot never goes uneaten and her bowl is always licked clean. She is starting to understand that food on the bench is not for her (although that doesn’t stop her from trying her luck) and she is very good at sitting patiently for her food to be prepared and waiting to be called before she bounds off her bed to eat. This morning, she even waited until after I had put her food down, gone back to the kitchen to fill her water bowl, put that down and then called her over before she jumped up to scoff her meal. We don’t really have problems with her annoying us during our own dinner either (although she does love the smell of oven chips for some reason). A quick “go to bed” sees her trot nicely over to her mat until it is time to get up and play again.
|Feeding time at the Zoo|
During the day, I suspect that it’s the boredom and loneliness that makes it so tempting for her to “explore” and see what she can find. Sometimes (like yesterday) her missions are successful, other times she gives up and sleeps the time away contentedly. We are learning, although admittedly a bit slowly than we should be, that the path of least resistance is to remove the temptations (food now sits on top of the fridge in the blocked off laundry) and to provide her with stimulating and challenging tasks. Peanut butter Kong is a current favourite and Squeakers are a classic source of hours of entertainment. Let’s hope that we don’t go through too many more boxes of Choc Drops before the message sinks in completely!!