UPDATE ON THE PUG SITUATION:
For those of you concerned about Nero's fate following the food experiment (see Dec. 31 post below), you'll be glad to know that the little black pug is back to normal - both in terms of size, as is evident in the days-old pic above, and mentality.
Unfortunately, Rex's grand plan didn't seem to have any effect on Nero's compulsive eating habits. Within two days, he was back sucking down his meals in seconds and licking the floor like there's no tomorrow (or no food tomorrow).
Rex's theory was simple. Let the pug eat as much as possible. At some point he'll quit, and the gorging will serve as a lasting reminder that gluttony only leads to discomfort and queasiness.
It only worked for one day.
So what lessons did we learn from all of this? I'm going to have to watch Nero's diet and eating habits for the rest of his life. Rex will never doubt even my most outrageous claims about the pug's compulsive behaviors. And Nero ... he didn't learn a damn thing!