Reality Bites: My Dog Ate What?

There are a million reality shows on the naked television. We're going to watch them all, one at a time.

Dogs are pretty dumb.

Don't get me wrong; I love dogs. I mean, cats are dumb, too. So are most pets, as we refer to those recently (in a geologic time scale sense) domesticated animals we foolishly allow to live among us. The key word being "animals." Compared to even your average Ted Cruz supporter, your run of the mill house beast isn't all that bright.

But in the never ending Bull Run that is the "cats vs dogs argument," even the most ardent mutt nuts have to acknoweledge that dogs aren't exactly discriminating in their digestive habits. In retrospect, a better idea for Nat Geo Wild's show might have been, Things My Dog Didn't Eat, but that would've ended after half a season.

This is another show of reenactments, mixed with occasional photos taken of the sick dogs in question, leading me to wonder who takes the time between discovery of possible life-threatening condition and rushing to the veterinarian to snap a couple pics. The program also has catchy titles like, "28 Tampons, Muscle Relaxants, and a Needle," which could definitely be seen as a spoiler of sorts.

At first, it's a mystery as to who consumed the 28 tampons (unused, a key distinction). Our first victim, Sarah, has two adopted dogs at the scene of the crime, and it turns out it was Monty, the border collie mix. Fortunately, the vet is able to induce vomiting in order to bring up the still expanding feminine hygiene products (accompanied by a hilarious dog's eye view re-creation of the puking).

The timing of this was critical. For an example of what happens when a tampon absorbs moisture, see below:

Next up, Kato the Siberian husky, who collapses with rapid heart rate and excessive drooling (which might be ignored were he a Saint Bernard) and, frighteningly, seizures and an eventual coma. It turns out Kato has downed a potentially lethal dose of the muscle relaxant Baclofen. They're able to secure a remedy, usually used on humans, turning Kato into a terrifying man-dog that leads his terrible canine army in a crusade to eradicate humanity.

Ha ha, no. He's fine. Seriously, do you think Nat Geo Wild (I guess this is the EXTREME spelling of National Geographic) is going to show any cases where the dog actually dies? What are they, monsters?

And what is this bullshit? A cat? According to her owner, Maxine has "a great personality." In cat terms that means she isn't a cruel and manipulative beast that would just as soon drink your blood as snuggle while you watch The Good Wife. As it turns out, Maxine got a sewing needle lodged in her mouth. Even worse, it's punched through the roof of her mouth into her eye socket. Surgery solves the problem, and though I can't confirm, I suspect the owner probably decided to take all her tailoring to the dry cleaning from that point on.

The parade of terror never ends. "Aggie" devours a cranberry wreath. Some 10 days later, after the owners have embarked on a Hawaiian vacation with little apparent alarm at her worsening condition, Aggie gets surgery to remove the alarming amount of wire she swallowed. Next up are Rufus the Great Dane and Petey the Chinese Crested (think an uglier miniature poodle, if that's even possible). He's also swallowed something that's making him sick, and the vet determines a) it's made of fabric, and b) is lodged between the small and large intestines and requires surgery.

[Side question:Is there a cutoff, price-wise, for pet surgery? After all, that had to have been an expensive operation. $2,000? $10,000? The sky's the limit? How much would you pay?]

There was another case involving a puppy more or less inhaling a 5-inch rib bone, foolishly offered to him as a treat by his owners. And with that, I'm officially reversing my earlier position. The sad realization one comes to after watching My Dog Ate What? is not that it's the owners, not the dogs, who are the problem.

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