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Pet-caused cooking disasters


jgm
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Rachel, I wish I was one of the children who is going to get your book. I can’t imagine anything dearer. They will treasure that the rest of their lives. Congratulations for getting it done – especially this time of year!

Fantastic stories. I am laughing like a manic. Pebs, I loved the picture of Daisy carrying her bowl to the basement! And the Massengil story had me howling! suzilightning, we used to have a cat who did the corncob thing with salted watermelon rind! I love the bread eating cats, too. Why do they do that? When I was a kid, we had one that would just chew through the plastic bag! And the butter lickers – only other cat people understand why the butter plate has plastic wrap over it when they come for dinner.

I can think of three stories, off hand. The first was my first ever entirely self cooked Thanksgiving dinner. I was in college and my mom, step dad (Ted Fairhead, here at eGullet), his mum and my dad came down for the dinner. That morning, I had set the turkey on the counter in its roasting pan to get ready to stuff. Got called away for some reason. I heard this incredible metallic thud/boom in the kitchen. On the way back into the kitchen, I was passed by our two cats zooming out. The turkey was on the floor. There were little tooth marks down both breasts :sad::unsure: . It wasn’t really a disaster because I washed that sucker and cooked it. WHAT? It was Thanksgiving, every grocery store was closed. What was I supposed to serve, 7-11 burritos? I had a guest all the way from England, for Pete’s sake! Erm. I did tell you that story already, right, Ted? I washed it really, really well. And probably overcooked it, too.

The second story really was a disaster and involves my dearly departed ET, the cat who wandered in to our lives from planet Nutjob. ET could open any refrigerator that wasn’t a side-by-side with his mighty paw. We learned to keep something in front of the fridge or keep a bungee cord on it (seriously, we did this – for years, he lived a long time). He would pop open the fridge, then presumably jump up inside and knock out anything that looked interesting. Then he and the other two cats would feast. I have hilarious pictures of one memorable occasion when my then one year old baby got involved while I went for a private bathroom break for (I swear) like 5 minutes. The disaster story took place when we lived in Indiana. Daughter and I came back to VA for a visit, leaving Mr. Kim to work, cat sit and do his shift on the volunteer rescue squad. I had given him precise directions on preparing a clay cooker roasted chicken, which he did. This large chicken, in various forms was going to be his meals for the week. Just as he was taking the aromatic pot out of the oven, his alarm went off. No dummy he, he put the pot in the fridge. Being in a huge rush to get to the fire station, he, however, forgot the bungee cord. He came home to find the pot on the floor, NO chicken and two very blissed out fatcats. He also found chicken bones strewn about the house for the next week. He ate a lot of canned soup that week.

ET would eat anything, as a matter of fact he would eat all of anything and then yak it up. One time he knocked a pyrex dish of brownies off the counter and cut and broke his leg. While we were racing hysterically around getting ready to take him to the vet ER, Otis the Pug (a sweet, but not smart breed, the pug) ate up all the brownies, including some glass. That was our first time taking two animals to the vet ER at the same time.

Kim

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My dear, departed, and much missed (by me at least, not necessarily by her fur-sister) miniature poodle Ella was *SUCH* a food thief, its hard to believe that at her heaviest she only weighed about 11 pounds, soaking wet and with a stuffed belly!

I couldn't leave anything in the kitchen trash unless I was there to guard it. Empty cream containers, butter wrappers, the most innocuous stuff, she'd think there was enough there to feast on, and I'd find it shredded in bed, or all over the house, licked spotless. Napkins or paper towels, even, if they'd touched food, they were fair game for the garbage disposal poodle.

One night, I'd grilled some chicken breasts for dinner, and was expecting someone to come over to give me an estimate on some handy-man work around the house. Of course, he showed up just as I'd sat down to eat. SILLY MOMMY DOG left the food sitting on the plate on the breakfast bar while I went out to deal with the issues at hand.

I came back into the kitchen to find Queen Ella sitting in MY chair, eating MY chicken. For literally years after that, I'd come home from work and find itty-bitty poodle paw prints on the breakfast bar, where Ms. Ella had meandered around, checking to see if Mommydog had had another brain fart and left something nummy for her.

Then there was the time she opened a Tupperware of Christmas cookies and and had a not-so-little nosh on them.............

And the time she snaked a dead piece of a meatloaf from the trash and stashed it in the couch for later snacking......

--Roberta--

"Let's slip out of these wet clothes, and into a dry Martini" - Robert Benchley

Pierogi's eG Foodblog

My *outside* blog, "A Pound Of Yeast"

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My dog Woody once scarfed a cooling pizza off the kitchen counter.

Not quite a kitchen story, but an ex-boyfriend had a dog who would neatly steal 1 slice (yes, a slice) of pizza from a pie brought home if the box if left unattended on the table.. She apparently would even make sure the box was shut behind her!

"I know it's the bugs, that's what cheese is. Gone off milk with bugs and mould - that's why it tastes so good. Cows and bugs together have a good deal going down."

- Gareth Blackstock (Lenny Henry), Chef!

eG Ethics Signatory

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We aren't big dessert eaters, but most weekends I make an angel food cake and we eat it with strawberries. Any leftovers get wrapped in copious amounts of saran wrap and frozen. (They freeze beautifully.)

Last Friday evening, I put two wedges of cake on top of the deep freezer to thaw while we ate supper. Just as we finished supper, my father called. I stepped outside to talk to him. It was a 30 minute talk. While I was outside, my husband closed the cat up in the bedroom and let our lab, Heppie, in to run around the house. I don't do this, as Heppie is a canine paper shredder.

When I came in from my talk, I asked my husband if he was ready for dessert. He said he would pass. I asked him why. "Well, Heppie ate my pice of angel food cake." He swore he only turned his back for a minute, but she got one peice down on the floor, unwrapped all the plastic wrap, and was holding the corners of the wrap with her paws and licking the last of the crumbs when he found her.

I thought it was sweet he said it was his piece and not mine. I split my piece with him, so all three of us had angel food cake that night.

Preach not to others what they should eat, but eat as becomes you and be silent. Epicetus

Amanda Newton

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And I thought I had had animal disasters!

Cat who licked a silver dollar sized spot of frosting off a completed wedding cake. No I didn't start over. I confess I did a quickie repair job and nobody knows but me and my maker. :wink:

My sister's wedding cake that was cooling on a shelf in the kitchen. It was eaten by my bother's dog, King. Had to bake more layers and frost and decorate the day of the wedding.

The chuck roast that was stolen from the BBQ while I was attending something inside for a few minutes.

The Siamese that chewed off most of a turkey leg while it was thawing on the counter. (This was before we knew better.)

The time I left a 1/2 lb. of butter on the counter to soften and came home to find that Sam the Mutt had eaten it all except for a small bit of paper.

The snowy night I left a Take 'n' Bake pizza sitting on the porch rail while I unlocked the door only to return and couldn't find it. I thought I may have left it in the car. It was several minutes before I spotte some very large dog prints going through the snow on my deck. Never did find a sign of the pizza or the dog again. I didn't have one at the time.

This year it was the pumpkin pie that we left sitting on the kitchen table while we had dessert in the living room. We went back to find that Crisco, the beagle, had climbed on a chair and eaten 2/3 of what was left. There's a reason that he has that name.

Edited by BarbaraY (log)
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This thread is too cute!

Bailey! That's the first thought that popped into my mind, when I read this. I've had bad pets, one dog loved coffee, one loved dairy, etc, but nothing tops my old orange cat Bailey. He was huge and gangly, long tall legs, slanky body, huge head, all boy. I swear his mom mated with an Irish Setter.

He ate most things (pizza, raisins, and mashed potatoes were some of his favorites), but made it a point to sample everything. Among his triumphs...the UNOPENED bag of Doritos left out on the kitchen table while we were out of the house, three frozen chicken breasts left on a plate, on the rangetop, a bag of wheat bread, a single serve sized bag of Cheeze Doodles, countless beers, and a pitcher of sangria, roses, you name it.

I can relate to the pinholes all over the rolls, the pineapple, etc, because that's what he would do. If it was in a crispy plastic bag, he would thoroughly ventilate said bag, and lick the dust off of whatever he could reach, his favorite things being cheeze dusted junk food. Bread, rolls, cheese puffs, whatever, if it was wrapped in plastic, it was his. He nailed the chicken breasts while my back was turned, I was like 2 feet away. At the speed of light, each one was covered with bite marks. They were frozen solid! I didn't hear a thing. To this day, my husband doesn't believe that it happened that way, but I swear the cat was a total ninja.

He also liked water, vases, pitchers, and tall vessels. I can't even count how many beer bottles and pilsner glasses fell into his clutches. Guests would come over, and foolishly set their bottles or glasses down. In mere seconds, here comes the cat, looking for a cheap buzz. During a small New Year's Eve get together at our place, he neatly waded to the center of a finger food laden table, passing chicken wings, chips, dip, various appetizers, to stick his face into a pitcher of sangria. When he realized he couldn't quite reach the good stuff, he knocked it over flooding out the whole table. It was then that he realized he didn't much like red wine, and fled.

Ditto to a vase of roses. Not quite food related, but it happened on the kitchen table...13 white roses, that husband sent to me for our first wedding anniversary. I fill the vase, arrange the roses, greenery and copious amounts of baby's breath. It was so stunning, this thing was 3 feet high, huge, totally dominated the whole kitchen. I had to run to the next room to get my camera, and you must know what came next...A heavy thud and the sound of water pouring off of a high surface, and return to see my beautiful arrangement half on the floor, half under his huge tiger feet, with his ass sticking out of my mom's lead crystal vase. He was licking the sediment from the rose food stuff. I was in tears.

We also learned the very hard way not to keep glasses of water on our bookshelf headboard.

I genuinely miss the guy. He was 3 tons of personality and mischief in a 14 lb body.

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My dog Dakota once gently removed a dirty water hotdog from its bun, as it was being held by someone I was standing next to on a corner while we waited for a light to change. The hotdog owner didn't realize it had happened until he brought the bun up to his mouth. I bought him another.

That takes the cake. Fantastic.

Our stories of food thievery are too numerous to share and now we've got an even bigger problem--our 11 y.o. doberman/terrier mix can get into our freezer (it's on the bottom). He figured this out a few years ago and someone here suggested we get one of those cheap window alarms. It worked like a charm...until recently, when we came home to find an open freezer door, and dying alarm, and a sea of wrappers and chewed up tupperware containers. He gnawed off the childproof lock we put subsequently on it and after literally eating the entire contents of our freezer (mostly--he merely pulled the frozen spinach to the white shag rug and let it melt there), we are stumped. Right now we have it blocked by a spare tire which is too heavy for him to move but is constantly in our way, to say the least. And what's to keep him from figuring out he can open the pantry and garbage? Crating may be in his future (and before someone suggests it's boredom, this is a dog that gets a run most days, a long walk all others).

Edited by kiliki (log)
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These are our two pets and partners in crime:

2094756392_120597d5fd_m.jpg

When we only had the dog Trixie, it was pretty easy to keep things out of reach. You could hold stuff on the table or counters, and it was safe. Sure, if you left something (say, a bowl of favorite ice cream or some tasty cheese) on the coffee table and left the room for a second, the dog would immediately find it and start licking it, but there were higher tables where you could put things down. There were sanctuaries.

And then the cat, Andy, moved in. A true scavenger and acrobat, no surface is too high, no treat can possibly remain out of reach. We haven't lost anything big or important yet, but I'm sure it's just a matter of time. I had left some cheese for shredding on the kitchen butcher block for a few minutes and closed the door to the kitchen behind me. When I came back, the kitchen door was open, the cheese wrapper was on the floor, the cheese was gone, Trixie was licking her lips, and Andy was casually grooming his paw. As I surveyed the scene, I figured out what happened, and interrogated the subjects with my version of the crime, like they do on CSI. I asked them if it was true that Trixie had opened the door with her paw (she has been known to open other doors), allowing Andy to jump up onto the butcher block, and knock the cheese onto the floor, where they both ate it. They looked guilty, which I took as a "yes."

Edited by plk (log)
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My cat, Willy. My mother's home, where I then lived. Scene: a buffet dinner party, the dessert for which was ALWAYS a pecan pie with whipped cream in my mom's homemade crust. Pie cooling in the kitchen, waiting to be brought out. Cat jumps up on the counter and eats all the fluted edge off the pie. ACK, Disaster! Mom to the rescue: take the whipped cream and instead of serving it on the side, spread it around the circumference of the pie. No one but she and I ever knew!

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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Like many others, I have many pet-related "food disaster" stories, some going back to my childhood. Far too many to relate here, in fact, there might even be enough for a book!

I was raised on a farm and we had lots of animal pets, some domestic, some semi-wild but all were forbidden entry to the kitchen, except for my grandpa's dogs, who were invariably well trained and would never touch even the most desirable (and reachable) foods. If only the same could be said of my pets.....

There was a screened-in porch between the main kitchen and the "summer" kitchen where there were often pies, cakes, cookies, and etc., placed for cooling. There was some habitual pilfering one summer and I was often accused of being the perpetrator but usually had an ironclad alibi in that I had been in the company of an adult. However, one summer I had found and adopted a pair of orphaned baby racoons a few months earlier and it turned out they had loosened a corner of screening and could get in and out of the porch undectected. Finally, when apple slices had been removed from several pies, one of the kitchen helpers spotted them, sitting on the top of a water butt at the corner of the porch, and washing apple slices in the water. The screening was repaired and strengthened. The cook was not amused. I don't recall what happened to the pies but I doubt they were wasted. The racoons were banished to one of the barns.

In the early '70s I had this great dane puppy

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who learned that the bottom freezer on my fridge had a foot pedal that caused it to pop open. He would shop around in the freezer and remove said item to the back yard where he would share it with the other dogs, another great dane, the elderly chihuahua in the photo and an even older maltese.

It was uncanny how he always managed to select the exact item I had planned for a dinner that week, never picking a package of ground round, or a pot roast, but always a rack of lamb, porterhouse steaks or prime rib roasts.

I finally bought a separate upright freezer WITH A LOCK and a two-door Kelvinator refrigerator that he could not open.

Many years later I had a genius basenji that also learned to open a single fridge door and that finally had to be secured with a velcro strap until I bought a side-by-side which was fine, as long as no one hung a dishtowel on the door handle. She was always alert to any error in judgement by humans - and took advantage. She preferred dairy items and could open the dairy compartment in the door, remove a carton of cottage cheese or sour cream and consume the contents in a very few minutes.

She also learned that the dishwasher door make a handy step-stool that allowed easy access to the counter top, so it always had to be latched. And she could open any microwave with a pushbutton latch at will. That's why I liked the early RadarRanges that had a handle.

All of my cabinets have "child-safe" latches because of her. (Lived 15+ years.)

This is not my basenji in the photo, but she is wearing a jacket because she suffered a severe burn when she tripped her owner who was carrying a pan of turkey gravy and the hot stuff landed on her back.

gallery_17399_60_274433.jpg

(The kneeling position had nothing to do with the injury, she has done this since a puppy.)

Eventually she recovered 100% from the burns.

Basenjis have an exceptionally fine sense for dectecting "fall-out" and even those with poor eyesight from cataracts in advanced age, can get to a piece of food falling onto the floor almost before it lands. They can be so deaf they can't hear their name called from four feet away, and yet can hear something being removed from the oven or fridge from two rooms away and materialize underfoot instantly.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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heads, came the sounds of "smick-smick-smick" from the living room. 

OMG!!! I know the dreaded "smick-smick-smick" oh too well - You know a cat(s) is up to no good when you hear that sound.

My mother had a giant hate of cats getting on the counter. I now think it's not so much for sanitation purposes (as well it should be) but for a couple of our cats who climbed up on the counter and demolished the entire breast of a Christmas turkey thawing in the sink.

Any of my cats have the fear of god put in them as kittens if they ever jump on the counter. If sprays of water doesn't work, mousetraps do!

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Reading over all of these hilarious posts, I think that everyone just needs to assume that if there are animals are in a house you are eating at, animal mouths have touched what you are eating. I know that I have consumed to-numerous-to-count cat/dog hairs and cooties! :wink:

Kim

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My dog is too polite and well-bred to steal food from humans' plates, the table, or the refrigerator. However, he will sit/stand and stare soulfully at the diner, waiting for a handout. This photo (taken several years ago, with my daughter eating mac & cheese) is a bit extreme, but you get the idea!

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The one exception was when a friend of my daughter's dropped a slice of pizza and it disappeared in a white flash as soon as it hit the floor.

But I'm not a complete stranger to thieving dogs. When I was younger, I weekended with friends who had a 2 year old, a 4 year old, and a German shepherd. My friends went next door for a moment, leaving me in charge of serving the kids their dinners. As I was finishing cooking, the 4 year old decided to get into his mother's strictly-off-limits oil paints and the 2 year old hit the kitchen garbage. I chased them away from those, washed their hands, and set the hamburger dinners down on the child-height coffee table. Turned around to seat the kids, turned back, and the two hamburgers -- with buns -- were GONE, wolfed down by the German shepherd running out the door.

I almost didn't have kids -- or dogs!

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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My dog Dakota once gently removed a dirty water hotdog from its bun, as it was being held by someone I was standing next to on a corner while we waited for a light to change. The hotdog owner didn't realize it had happened until he brought the bun up to his mouth. I bought him another.

Along a similar vein, someone I know used to like eating comfortably in bed (think of eating Roman-style while lounging on chaise). Anyway, she was lying on her side, propped up on an elbow, gnawing the last of the meat off what was probably the bone from a lamb shank or some other big piece of meat. After a very short time, she thought, "Something seems strange," and she looked over to find the dog gnawing on the other end of the bone. While she's normally very protective of her food, she let the dog have it.

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My parents were visiting. I was going to make some gingersnap balls for my dad the next day (his favorite cookies) and got some idea that it would be the perfect time to compare different brands of molasses. One new jar of Gramma’s, one new jar of Steens, a Brer Rabbit, some blackstrap . . . All but one were in glass jars. We tasted, replaced the lids, didn’t keep notes, and left to go out to dinner. Our two angelic Portuguese Water Dogs, who usually left packaged ingredients alone, assured us they’d be good.

We returned to find Lama cowering in the “guilty spot”—just inside the door, where he’d wait for us when he’d been naughty, three jars of molasses smashed on the tile kitchen floor, and the plastic jar chewn open on the family room carpet. That’s the OFF-WHITE family room carpet. No ill-effects for the dogs (except for my screaming), but a hell of a mess to clean up. The dog groomer wasn't very happy with us, either.

Life is short. Eat the roasted cauliflower first.

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Along a similar vein, someone I know used to like eating comfortably in bed (think of eating Roman-style while lounging on chaise). Anyway, she was lying on her side, propped up on an elbow, gnawing the last of the meat off what was probably the bone from a lamb shank or some other big piece of meat. After a very short time, she thought, "Something seems strange," and she looked over to find the dog gnawing on the other end of the bone. While she's normally very protective of her food, she let the dog have it.

Same idea, different critter. My cat Fats was lounging on the back of the couch where I was sitting with a can of Pepsi and a (sorry) Little Debby brownie. I've got the half eaten brownie in my hand, just sort of flopped on the couch while watching TV. All of a sudden, I feel somthing happening to my brownie, come out of the TV-induced fog, and watch the cat very delicately nibbling on it with his front teeth, almost like eat an ear of corn! I had to remind him that 1. cats do not like chocolate and 2. chocolate doesn't like cats. He looked at me and laughed! :raz:

ETA: typo

Edited by judiu (log)

"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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I finally bought a separate upright freezer WITH A LOCK and a two-door Kelvinator refrigerator that he could not open.

Many years later I had a genius basenji that also learned to open a single fridge door and that finally had to be secured with a velcro strap until I bought a side-by-side which was fine, as long as no one hung a dishtowel on the door handle.

So that's what it's going to come to for us, hmm? *sigh*

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Our cat Sherman...

- somehow got the clamshell packaging on a box of glazed donuts open. We came home to find him covered in sticky, crusty donut glaze. Took days to get him clean.

- has run off with the cheese packet (the non-powdered kind) from the package of macaroni and cheese too many times to count - and thoroughly ventilates said packet with hundreds of little bite marks. Yes, after scrubbing cheese off his head, I have finally learned my lesson and hide the packet.

- ran across my just frosted Christmas cookies - tracking red frosting throughout the house

- this was embarassing for me - I made cupcakes for a (non-pet owning) friend's birthday. Of course she had to get the one with a Sherman hair on top. So embarassing.

i try to keep him off the counter. really i do.

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When I was 11 or 12, I baked my mother a lemon meringue pie for her birthday. I went out to get the mail and caught my cat, Spanky, when I came in, sitting on the counter with a faceful of freshly baked meringue. Never have I seen an Oh Shit! look like that on a cat's face.

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I had actually forgotten about this until yesterday when I was telling a coworker about it.

Years ago my sis had a rather-fond-of-food samoyed named Scruffy who loved vegetables, especially ones that were crunchy and green. Green peppers were her favorite and Tam always fed her some while she cooked dinner.

We had moved into an apartment with a large yard....the apartment below was available at the same time that my sis and her boyfriend (and dog) were looking to move. They moved in, and we decided to plant a garden since we had so much yard space.

One day while I was outside weeding I gave Scruff one of the green beans we were growing, to see if she'd like it. Apparently she did, because the next day when we came outside, all the beans that were easy to reach were gone. Vanished. I got a lecture from my fellow gardeners about not teaching the dog to pick her own food.....

If only I'd worn looser pants....

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growing up my mom made bread every day becasuse we lived out of town. Each night for almost a month and almost every night the bread would dissappear from the bread pans without them moving so much as an inch. We could not figure it out the dog probably got about 14 loaves of bread which meant no toast for breakfast and no sandwiches for dinner. Turns out the lab we were babysitting had found an easy treat and without the pans moving he was not the suspect. Rodents never took a whole loaf , we were baffled. We still can't figure out how he got up on the counter that high , he may have jumped all the way up......but he was finnally caught with a loaf.

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The funniest thing is how you assume certain foodstuffs are safe because "why would a cat eat it"...

My husband was working on a project that involved samples being brought home of all kinds of flat breads...pitas, lavash, etc.

We had a carton full of chalupas, which were wrapped in plastic, that we left on the floor of the dining room just until they were to be shipped on Monday.

Came home to find carton opened, plastic bag torn, and first couple of layers of chalupas with chunks missing. And a cat with a big belly snoring on the couch.

Our theory was that the late day sun hit that box and the cat was enticed by the yeasty smell.

When I was a kid, we discovered that the only way to protect meat from my dear departed cat Pepper was to put it into the microwave and shut the door. That was the "vault".

"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast" - Oscar Wilde

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I had actually forgotten about this until yesterday when I was telling a coworker about it.

Years ago my sis had a rather-fond-of-food samoyed named Scruffy who loved vegetables, especially ones that were crunchy and green.  Green peppers were her favorite and Tam always fed her some while she cooked dinner.

We had moved into an apartment with a large yard....the apartment below was available at the same time that my sis and her boyfriend (and dog) were looking to move.  They moved in, and we decided to plant a garden since we had so much yard space.

One day while I was outside weeding I gave Scruff one of the green beans we were growing, to  see if she'd like it.  Apparently she did, because the next day when we came outside, all the beans that were easy to reach were gone.  Vanished.  I got a lecture from my fellow gardeners about not teaching the dog to pick her own food.....

Yup. My current lab has to be closely watched when tomatoes are ripe. He helps himself to the best ones. His predecessor, also a lab, would pick the cantaloupes when they were just perfectly ripe and leave them just outside the back door. If we did not claim them by late afternoon, she feasted on them. Being a retriever, she was able to pick them and carry them with almost no tooth marks (soft mouth). She was also quite proficient at hopping the fence into the duck yard, finding an egg, hopping back and having an egg party. The worst was when she found the nest of ducklings and reverted to her ancestral hunting ways.....we saved one.

ETA: hit send before I replied!

Edited by heidih (log)
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I was sent to bring in the steaks off the grill...the steaks I had scrimped for to splash out on a lavish at home dinner for my Dad. I was maybe 18 or something. I dropped them when I tripped over a 75 lb. Lab. I hosed them off with the garden hose, marked the one I pulled out of the dog's paws, put them back on the grill, gave them another minute, fliipped them, gave them another minute. I was resolved to take the one the dog had gotten.

But then my Dad took the plate out of my hands! And I lost control of it! And HE ate it.

:wacko:

“Don't kid yourself, Jimmy. If a cow ever got the chance, he'd eat you and everyone you care about!”
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One day while I was outside weeding I gave Scruff one of the green beans we were growing, to  see if she'd like it.  Apparently she did, because the next day when we came outside, all the beans that were easy to reach were gone.  Vanished.  I got a lecture from my fellow gardeners about not teaching the dog to pick her own food.....

A Christmas story. We hung gingerbread cookies on the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve, then went to church. Came home a few hours later to find the lower row of cookies gone--just ribbons around the branches--and the next row up was about half-devoured, Santas missing legs, gingerbread men gone from the waist down... Our dog Mandy had found a snack, and not a bulb or shiny ball was out of place.

She pushed her luck another year, when we came home to find the tree tipped over and all the cookies within reach gone. Or half-gone.

(What a dog she was. She had a daily round, visiting the neighbors for handouts. Oh, too busy to come to the door? I'll help myself to the cold buffet that is your garbage can.)

Margo Thompson

Allentown, PA

You're my little potato, you're my little potato,

You're my little potato, they dug you up!

You come from underground!

-Malcolm Dalglish

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