Mmmmm...Brillo Pads

My Shih Tzu Cosby has developed a taste for Brillo pads, apparently. I freaked out yesterday morning when I discovered that the little troublemaker had consumed a small portion of the stuff after digging around under the sink. I hurried him over to the vet, who determined that Cosby hadn't eaten enough to really cause great alarm, but that I would need to monitor to make sure the steel wool wasn't going to stick in his digestive tract.


Cosby, Hungry For Cleaning Products hide caption

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To spare you the gory details, suffice it to say that everything came out OK. But still, this freaks me out. What else should I be protecting him from? I mean, for Pete's sake, that's metal! Why on earth would he even want to eat that?

My "pet" theory is that it had something to do with texture, and director Jacob postulates (rather unscientifically) that maybe Cosby has an iron deficiency and was motivated by the smell of something ferrous. Engineer Manoli rather Socratically asks: "Why do people chew gum?"

Any other thoughts out there? Does anybody else have a similar horror story?



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It's not just dogs. Some cats like to like metal objects. Our cats are obsessed with licking plastic bags. To them, it's better than cat nip. Okay, maybe not better, but a close second.

Meanwhile, one of the dogs my wife's family had a while back used to eat anything he could get his paws on. They had to have his stomach pumped on several occasions. The weirdest incident was when they came home and found that the decorative candles on their dining room table were gone. He'd eaten them.

Sent by andy carvin, npr | 10:35 AM | 3-19-2008

Was it a used brillo pad? Cosby might have smelled food bits from previous scrubbings. Kind of in the same way that some pets rifle through the trash and eat nothing but mint flavored dental floss.

Sent by Sarah Lee | 11:04 AM | 3-19-2008

Ick, brillo pad. I agree that the texture probably appealed to Cosby -- may have been more interested in chewing than actually ingesting. My mother's dog, Maggie, was acting sluggish for weeks. $1000 in vet bills later, an x-ray showed that she had a needle with 14" of thread stuck in her throat. She's fine now, but we humans continue to scratch our heads over what could have possessed her to eat a tiny sharp metal object. Yum?

Sent by Amanda | 11:07 AM | 3-19-2008

My cat once ate over two meters of blue ribbon. I caught him in the process. Does that mean he had a deficiency of blue foods?! ;)

Sent by Summer | 11:08 AM | 3-19-2008

My cat, so far, has never tried to eat much of anything that could kill him. I did find some dental floss in his "output" once. The vet did warn that sometimes when cats swallow string you shouldn't pull it out of their mouths. It could have already made it to their intestines where it can become tangled. Pulling it out could rip their innards up. So its best to let nature take its course.

Sent by Adam | 11:55 AM | 3-19-2008

my old dog ate a piece of couch once and rope...he used to try to eat anything when he was sick to feel better...

Sent by crystaal | 12:30 PM | 3-19-2008

Could be you just have an INSANE DOG.

Sent by Chris Maltby | 1:04 PM | 3-19-2008

@ Sarah Lee - No! He stuck his snout in the box and pulled out a fresh one. Ugh.

Sent by Win Rosenfeld -- NPR | 1:05 PM | 3-19-2008

I had a fabulously crazed dog who ate rope,leaves, couch stuffing, etc. My theory was that over years of evolution, dogs, cats, and other domesticated animals
were all made just a little bit crazy by their owners. Left to their own devises they know what to do to get lots of attention. Perhaps your puppy just likes to see himself in the media.. Does he have a facebook profile?

Sent by BettyannGlasser | 4:27 PM | 3-19-2008

my roommates dog (the dumbest rot on the planet) ate my other roommates 3 foot annual Christmas beeflog from Hickory Farms. We came home to find the wrapper pieces strewn about and heard the low moans of a very sick dog.

That poor dog was sick for 3 days and Josh missed his holiday snacking.

(the dog was ok, the vet said to just let nature take its course)


Sent by jeff stiefer | 4:11 AM | 3-20-2008

We had a family dog with a penchant for feminine products. Really, he would go for anything, and even learned how to open the refrigerator door to get at the good stuff. I guess that's why we called him Tank.

Sent by Cori | 9:13 AM | 3-20-2008

Cori, your family kept feminine products in the refrigerator? Weird.

Sent by Greg | 4:11 PM | 3-20-2008

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