A venerable lady was royally fooled by her little dog when he barked at the sofa in her living room and seemed to be searching for something underneath. She got down on her hands and arthritic knees and peered underneath to see if the fluffy dog had lost his favourite red ball under the offending sofa. However, despite searching under the length of the divan, no treasures were unearthed. The dog persisted in his gyrations and yapping and jumped onto the sofa and started sniffing beneath the cushions. Lo and behold, wedged between the end cushion and the arm was a stash of dry dog food which seemed to surprise the canine as much as the human. How did a bowlful of dry dog food get under that cushion? The lady discussed the situation with her bewildered husband and they ruled out the possibility of a mouse in the house or a squirrel as there were no traces of animal invasion and, surely, the food would be marked up in some way.

Who had been in the house in the last couple of days that could have hidden away the food and why? Was this a Halloween ruse? They finally sent an email to a good friend who had visited earlier in the day and she responded: “Ha Ha – he must have been such a good dog that the dog fairy left him a treat”.  Presuming that this response meant the friend had pulled a trick on them, the couple, much assuaged, retired to bed with their favourite pooch, but not before putting the bowlful of dog food back in the dog’s bowl.

The next morning, much to their horror and surprise, they found that the food in the bowl in the kitchen had completely disappeared and the dog had never left their bedroom. If a mouse hadn’t been spotted disappearing down a hole under the fireplace, they would have been convinced they had been visited by a witch or a goblin. Can you envisage an army of mice hauling, overnight, a total of 62 pieces of dry canine food about 25 metres?