Has this ever worked?
At dinner a little while ago, I noticed my oldest sneaking peas to Gus (the dog).
By “sneaking,” I mean that he’d called Gus over to his chair and was taking peas off his plate and feeding them to him one at a time. Gus was taking each one in his mouth, then trying to get it out of his mouth, and then going back to his boy in the obvious hopes that the next treat would not be a pea.
I gave my wife a significant nod to point out the whole operation, but she was already watching, a bemused smile on her face. Our other son was watching as well, and working very hard not to laugh out loud.
I put on my Daddy Voice. “Those peas are for you, not Gus.”
The big guy jumped in surprise, then looked around the table at all of us staring at him, then looked over his shoulder, as if somehow a new member of the family might have arrived and been standing directly behind him. “You mean me?”
His younger brother burst out laughing, gales of laughter that shook his whole body. His momma rolled her eyes and shook her head. I raised an eyebrow at him and nodded toward Gus, who was standing right next to him, trying to get a pea out of his mouth.
The big guy laughed, and reached over to spoon a big pile of peas on to his plate from the serving dish.
Which, I think, was probably the best thing he could have done, given the situation.