This story is one that I am a bit conflicted on. I am happy at how things turned out as my daughter really liked this adventure (in retrospect) but this arose from a chronic problem.
Background: There is a nice playground near the ocean. No dogs are allowed on the playground at all or within 10 feet of the playground. There is a nearby field on one side and the beach on the other. I believe all dogs must be leashed on the field, but not on the beach In any case, the beach is essentially a huge and popular off leash area for dogs.
Further background: Dogs are constantly on the playground. I don't think I've visited a single time when a dog did not enter the playground area (generally off leash). My friends kids were knocked over one time and the dogs just run around. I stay much closer to my daughter than other parks.
So one morning I went down there with coffee and muffins. My 4 year old daughter was with me in the middle of the playground eating a muffin. A dog came running up and started sniffing at her muffin. She lifted it above her head and the dog started jumping on top of her. I shooed the dog and looked for owners who were coming into sight. I started to gather up the other food as the dog was sniffing around on the bench and the dog started to jump at my daughter so I abandoned the food and picked up my (now upset) daughter and held her out of range of the dog. The dog then gobbled up the muffin on the bench and my daughter started crying for real. The owners called the dog. I yelled that "your dog just ate our muffin". The owners scurried away without an apology with me glaring at them and my daughter weeping over the lost muffin and mean doggy.
I tried to play for a bit, but my daughter was sad and nervous about all dogs and I was super cranky so we went to car after about 5 minutes. Just as we got to the car, a truck pulled up and a woman got out.
It was owner. She came up. She apologized and she gave us a huge muffin (with chocolate chips). My daughter was thrilled. I was mollified and all was right with the world.
That was months ago and my daughter still tells the story of how the dog ate her muffin and she got a new muffin with chocolate chips and wasn't that nice of the owner?
(I'm still annoyed that the dog was running free in the first place, but I am glad the owner apologized and made the world right for my daughter)