Every once in a while, we all need to be corrected, right?
As well behaved as Karina has been, the trainers at Canine Companions told us early on that she was food-driven.
At the time, I thought to myself, “Well, aren’t we all? I know I am.”
It became a problem this week.
We’ve been trying to only put the food bowls down for the cats when they come looking for them, but one thing will lead to another, and Paige and I will become involved in another matter and forget they’re down.
For a while, we would find Karina staring intently at them, but one day, the bowl was clean.
When I say clean, I mean clean. No food. No hint of food — licked clean to the point you might think it just came from the dishwasher.
It has become the telltale sign that the cat food has been eaten by the dog.
After the first time it happened, I told myself it was something we need to be diligent about, but I know cat food isn’t good for the health of dogs.
I tried to carefully watch Karina and the bowls, and I did the Canine Companions correction technique when I saw her sniffing them.
I swear Karina knows she’s not supposed to do it, and she gives a very pitiful look when she’s caught, but she still continued to misbehave.
Karina got into the cat food again Tuesday while I was talking to an air-conditioner repairman, and Paige and I decided it was time to fix this problem for good.
We learned another valuable lesson at Canine Companions about just avoiding the problem altogether. Yes, we can correct the dog, but I know we weren’t setting her up for success by continuing to handle the matter by trying to pick up and put down cat bowls.
We put Karina in her kennel and met Paige’s parents and our niece, Hannah, for dinner at Red Robin before Hannah heads off to college.
I needed time to think about the best course of action and what better place to do that than Red Robin?
After the meal, Paige, J.P. and I went to Petco to survey our options.
We looked at several gates that had doors for smaller pets, and we found a planter that can be used to double as a litter box. We thought for a few minutes that the cats go inside of it to eat instead of do their business.
Finally, we decided on what looks like an end table or cabinet with a cut out for the cats to get in and out of. It’s called a Pet Privacy Den, and we can open the door and put the food inside.
It wasn’t cheap, but I believe it’s going to solve the problem.
It was pretty easy to put together, but I don’t think Karina is happy about the plan. The cats seem to be OK with it.