I caught her in flagrante delicto when I heard the easily identifiable clang of her tags hitting a metal bowl. I’d been hearing them for several minutes and just ignored them, but then I thought, “Why is she making that noise? I don’t feed her in the kitchen anymore.” And I looked at the open gate and I knew what had happened.
Oh, well. This was a couple of hours ago, so if the catfood gives her the trots she’s got the rest of the day to get it out of her system, rather than make a mess inside the house, or even worse, insider her crate overnight.
“Get it out of her system” is not a figure of speech.
Immediately after I caught her in the act, she knew she’d done wrong. So she went into Full Placation Mode. She knows that she gets affection if she looks sad or if she looks excited and happy, so she tried both — her head hung low with her ears down while her tail was wagging so hard that her whole butt was wiggling to keep up.