Rory likes to feed the dogs. He’ll feed them until he has no food left in his bowl. Then he cries. “Hey! Someone took all my food! Where did my food go? I’M HUNGRY AND I HAVE NO FOOD!!!”
Originally, I decided to let natural consequences play out. Of course, I warned him of the consequences first. But then I just stood back and let nature take its course. If he feeds the dogs and then has no food, well, he’ll be hungry, won’t he? And hunger will be the negative consequence of his poor decision that will teach him NOT to feed his lunch to the dogs, right?
Um, not so far. I would expect a lessons like this to take three to five days, max. Food-related lessons don’t take long! Certainly not for a kid who loves his food as much as Rory. But this one? Well, Rory LOOOOOVES feeding the dogs. Loves it. It brings him great, great pleasure. Pleasure that far, far outweighs any niggling concerns re: feeding his own self.
So these days the dogs are crated during lunch. It’s just simpler that way. I don’t want the dogs learning to beg at the table any more than I want Rory going hungry every day.
Today, however, I forgot. I was sitting across the table from Rory. The table hid Indie, who was sitting hopefully (and very politely) beside his tray. I didn’t see her, that is, until Rory held a piece of pasta over the side of his tray. Suddenly there was a nose there. The nose did not snatch the food out of Rory’s hand, but only licked, gently and thoroughly cleaning all traces of sauce off the pasta.
I rose quickly from my chair. “Indie! House!” Indie, radiating ‘oh, I’m a bad doggie’, slunk to her crate. I approach Rory, intending to dispense with the squeaky-clean pasta. “And Rory, you monkey. Do not feed the dog!” I’m rounding the corner of the table, my hand moving to take the pasta from him, and
into the mouth it goes. I stop dead. “Oh, Rory. YUK.”
He looks at me.
I’ve seen this sort of thing before. I know it’s not life-threatening. It probably doesn’t need to skeeve me out the way it does. But… if you own a dog, you know the sorts of places that tongue gets, and…