Last night, as I was cleaning up the kitchen for the night, I tossed two slices of uneaten pizza into the trash can (which was admittedly quite full) and finished up the dishes. Charlie was lounging on the floor watching me and patiently waiting until we could play some more games. I went into the bathroom to brush my teeth and a few minutes later I heard weird licking noises coming from the other room.
I peeked around the corner into the kitchen and found Charlie standing next to the garbage can, licking her lips. There was only one piece of pizza in the trash can now. She had stolen the other piece and eaten it in like 30 seconds!
This is the first time in Charlie's three years of life that she has EVER stolen anything out of the garbage! I was shocked. I slammed the lid down on the trash can and told her sternly, "Naughty GIRL!"
She seemed quite pleased with herself although possibly a little perplexed at why she was "naughty." I don't hit my dog when she's naughty, so instead I gave her the cold-shoulder treatment. I completely ignored her for the rest of the night.
Wow, does that ever work! She kept her distance but continued to follow me around for the night, occasionally looking up at me with this quizzical look saying, "Are we good yet?" Even when I got into bed, there were no snuggles, no kisses, no "I wuv you's." I just turned out the light and went to sleep.
Sometime around 1am, she woke me up to go potty. I don't know if she needed to puke up her stolen pizza or just go pee, but I let her out... still giving her no verbal responses or physical attention. Back in bed, she seemed concerned about my behavior.
By this morning, though, the time for punishment was over. Silent treatment had to end because enough time had passed that she would have no idea why I was still acting like this. I gave her snuggles and kisses and she seemed extremely relieved to have her mommy back to normal.
Lesson learned: now that she knows she can take things out of the garbage, the lid will remain closed at all times.