Once upon a time I adopted a precocious Border-Aussie rescue puppy that was personality-plus and cuteness beyond cute. The little puppy established herself as a chewer early on, demonstrating that perfectly good shoes were as much fun, if not more so, to play with than stuffed squeaky toys. Throw in pieces of wood I had mistakenly put on the floor, and the little puppy had no shortage of things to 'play' with...and mischief to get in to.
Because she grew up at the dead-end of a dead-end of a dead-end road, this little puppy that we'll call, say, Molly, learned to love roaming in nature out of the gate. Per other neighbors on her road, there is only one that lives there year-round, the others being seasonal visitors. Because I got Molly in the fall, she and the neighbors had never met. Suffice it to say it was a snowy, cold, and 'quiet' winter, with no visitors braving the eternal snowy and icy conditions.
Welcome a big Easter holiday with luscious warmth and beautiful days abounding, and many of the seasonal folks came up to open up their homes. I forgot to add that this "Molly" is not only a chewer, but a barker, unlike my past rescues. It's embarrassing enough to go greet the visitors and apologize for the barky baby, and thankfully they didn't mind a bit. But this human activity was all new to the ever-inquisitive puppy, these people and their pets, and their grandkids, and, well, the whole kit and kaboodle.
I kept making sure that when I saw Molly at the next house, out in the yard helping the owners plant flowers, that she wasn't pestering them. She just loved the new things to see and do and chose to be over there with her new best friends. They assured me she was welcome and fine, and to leave her be.
And then it started to happen. Miraculously, a gardening glove appeared at the top of my driveway. Then another. Then a paint roller handle. Then a shoe. Then an empty plant container. Seems as though Molly has a bona-fide thievery complex, as she continually went down and selected items to bring back. Luckily that's all she did, bring them back, as opposed to the next irreversible step of chewing up and destroying said stolen goods.
Nothing that a quick walk to return the items didn't cure, but the embarrassment was hard to avoid. Nobody has fences up here, and everyone gets along great and accepts everyone's pets. I just happen to be raising a kleptomaniac who does her job well.