Posted by: thatjen | January 11, 2007

It Happens

I knew it would happen someday. I just wasn’t prepared for it to be this soon. Nor did I expect it to be completely and utterly my fault. I knew, from stories told by friends with older kids, that someday Natalie would put something utterly gross in her mouth. But I thought it would happen when she was walking – a toddler, able to escape childproofing, restraining arms, out of my sight for a few seconds.

Nope. Today, not quite nine months old. In the babysitter’s living room. In. My. Lap.

She ate…

…dog shit.

Dog shit I had tracked in on my shoe. Yup. WWM*, here I come.

After you recover from retching, allow me to say this: Babies are not right, sometimes. I was muttering and gagging while running around the house with her in my arms. Natalie was smiling and chewing away, getting hysterical only when I fished the crap out of her mouth and kept reaching in to get every last bit. The kid LIKED the turd.

So now that I have completely grossed you out, I will ask of you two favors:
1) Is there anything we should DO about this? Call the doctor? Feed her ipecac? Get her wormed?
2) Please share any of your own stories of children** eating horrid things so I don’t feel so bad!

*World’s Worst Mother
**You as a child, your own kid, that annoying neighbor kid down the street, whoever.



  1. I’m sorry, but I was just laughing.

    I’m im’ing you now – I’m sure she’ll be fine…

  2. You’re not the only WWM. My son decided that a toilet brush would be a nice thing to gnaw on.

  3. She will be just fine. Couldnt answer right away, I was too busy laughing.

  4. My sister ate an ant button, which was ant poison. My mom put her to bed for a nap, and then told our neighbor, who told her to get her to a doctor, quick. She had to have her stomach pumped. Oh- and my mom gave same sister a birth control pill. They used to come in packages like baby aspirin.

    My own story involves an ambulance call and a trip to the E.R. with 9 month old. Don’t feel bad. But I would call your ped. Jill

  5. Aidyn ate a half smoked cigerette. Neither of us smoke we were at a party at the fire station Jody works at. I didn’t think too much about it I fished it out rinsed his mouth and went on about my business. We left early just in time to arrive home for some power spews. We ended up in hospital after a call to poison control who told me in a baby his size one cigerette but could be fatal. He ended up fine probably from the power spews…although the nurse at the hospital did tell me that I should watch my son. He was 8 months or so and crawling after the big kids at the party.

  6. I did suck the nectar out of a rhodenderon flower when I was six, along with some other girls in my class – we were all brought to the hospital, and I don’t really remeber if we had our stomachs pumped, or if we were just observed.

    I DO remember my health anxiety starting then, however, imagine me walking around my block in the summer, 6 years old, thinking I was going to DIE! From a little flower nectar. Wow – I coulda hada v-8 – I’m just realizing that it was probably a combination of the doctors, my parents and teh school teachers who instilled in me the fear of any symptom and thus, my health anxiety!

    Well there ya have it – wow.

    And um, dog poo is a bit more organic than some of the other stuff we’ve all accidentally injested, and hey – dogs eat it, right? And they’re fine…

  7. Children eating non-food nastiness…

    Well, I “dared” my sister to eat a rolly-poly bug (and she did)…

    And, I told my brother if he ate puppy chow he would bark like a dog… and he tried it…

    trying not to laugh too hard because Hannah is only a couple of months behind!

  8. So in an interesting wrapup of our week, last night Natalie came into our bed and ate a little after midnight. After that, she slept until about 5:45. When she woke up, she was all smiles and giggles.

    I think I’ll write a book called the Shits and Grins Sleep Solution

  9. My son always makes a beeline for the dog bone (one of those with filling). He actually got to it one day and had it in his mouth before I got to him. He smelled like the maple syrup crap inside for the rest of the day. I’m just hoping next time he does something like that I have the camera ready for future blackmail 🙂

  10. hee hee.

    When she’s older and she says something tastes like shit, you can be like, yeah and you know what Nat?

    You know what shit tastes like.

    And she will be MORTIFIED.

  11. Oh man. I am laughing at the story and the comments! Cat litter and cat food is a biggie over here. Nothin better, apparently. Oh, and I had to take my daughter to the hospital for xrays and the whole deal when she ingested a piece of plastic and couldn’t breathe. I was nursing her, she gagged and choked, I saw in her mouth a piece of plastic and couldn’t reach it. Had the paramedics over here in mere minutes (though it felt like an eternity).

  12. Well, there was the bodyglide incident:
    One really bad thing was when Picchi had a horrible 9-day stomach virus that started out with vomiting and continued with the world’s worst and longest-lasting diarrhea, and Uomo fed him applesauce, which, we discovered an hour later, was moldy. And it was a newly-opened jar of applesauce! He *thought* he heard the lid pop, but I guess not. Anyway, under normal circumstances, moldy applesauce would not be the end of the world, but the poor kid was already ill. We thought he was beginning to get over it, but thanks to the applesauce he once again began puking his guts out. We called the doctor, and they were like “Oh yeah, mold irritates the stomach.” Yeah. We are such wonderful parents, dontcha think?
    And by the way, if I wrote down everything I’ve ever found in one of their mouths or seen them *feeding* each other, I’d be taking over your entire blog.
    Dog shit is gross, but she’ll live. I would probably call the doc as a precaution, but that’s me – I’m a little cautious these days. And you’re right- babies are NOT always right. No way, dude.

  13. Anyway, I’m sure she’s fine- and echo everyone else who said call just as a precaution. Gus hasn’t gotten into anything that gross yet (at least we haven’t caught him), but he does like to chew on [new] tampons and dog food! And the other day he was behind the fridge and we thought he was playing with his fridge toys and when i turned around 2 minutes later he was standing at the trash can, had taken the lid off his old birthday cake container, and was using an old empty paper towel roll from the recycling to scoop off the leftover cake and eat it.

  14. Heh. This is too funny. I am sure she will be fine. As mentioned, my dogs eat it, including the one who may weight less than Nat.

    Oh, and to make you feel better, my aunt was an incorrigible ash eater. Yes, she would cruise the room and scoop the cigarette ashes from the ashtrays into her mouth. The doctor back then (1950’s) said that she must be lacking something in their diet and not to worry too much. She did grow up to be the world’s most royal bitch but other than that was unscathed.

  15. Art, that’s too damn funny. I have to remember it for the future.

    Julie, I’d totally forgotten about the bodyglide. Thankfully I did not call poison control on this one!

    We did talk with a nurse who said, there’s nothing to do but we should keep an eye on her just in case she gets a stomach bug or something.

  16. Dorian ate plaster that bubbled off the wall of our 70+ year old house after the roof leaked. And yes, I was in the room (on the computer) at the time. I am relatively sure that we got most of the lead paint off the wall when we sanded and primed the walls when we moved in….

    I’ve never tried dog poop, personally, but all the dogs I’ve ever owned swear it is very very yummy.

  17. Hee hee! That is too funny. Glad she seems no worse off for it.

    I caught Logan with a nugget of cat litter in his mouth a couple weeks ago. The location of the box has been changed, so hopefully this won’t happen too many more times.

    *shrug* Can’t said dog poop or cat litter would be my idea of a good snack, but evidently our kids think otherwise.

  18. Uh huh.

    I have a vague idea that one of my kids may have tried/succeeded at this in the backyard about nine months further down the growing-up road. But I have definitely blocked it out. So no details.

    I think you’re fine, but call the doc just to be sure. If she didn’t vomit right away, there’s probably nothing worth doing.

    You do realize it will be hysterically funny some day, right? Because — oh yeah.

    (Also, you now have a child who can, in all honesty, accuse you of letting her eat poop. That’s a priceless gift for any future teenager, really.)

  19. **giggles**

    Seems like we all have little stories like that… if it makes you feel any better !

    While in a hospital waiting room, my baby sister (who was under my care) came out from playing underneath the chairs, chewing a HUGE load of Bubblegum… Nice, isnt it ?

    Natalie will be just fine ; not sure her moms will recover though !

    Have a nice weekend !

  20. SO sorry!!! How icky!?? Speaking from a veterinary medical aspect there are a few parasites that are transmissible by fecal oral routes. You should contact your pediatrician on Monday. I believe the main concern is for roundworm transmission. If it’s a healthy, dewormed, animal you shouldn’t have a problem! 🙂

  21. BTW, your blog was foreshadowing. My son tried a chunk of his own poo the day after I commented on your post. At least the pediatrician found it funny.

  22. A longtime lurker who had to chime in on this one. When my daughter was about a year old we were all outside in our backyard. I heard her making a weird crunching sound and when I investigated I found she was eating a live snail! Gross! And digging it out of her mouth was just so special….

  23. Catshit. On the carpet. And it was soft, because my cat had some nessed-up intestinal flora.. Seph didn’t like it. Husband panicked. Men are weak like that. Nothing like seeing your sweet baby with poop smeared around their mouths, is there? Ought to be a spot in any decent baby book to record that!

  24. My brother ate snails when he was a kid. I don’t think my mother rushed him to the pediatrician.

  25. I ate a cockroach. Several before my mom could get to me and get them out of my mouth.

  26. Delurking to say I’m a vet, and you don’t need to worry about worms if the shit was fresh – the eggs aren’t infective for 48 hours or so after the faeces are passed anyway. And soil, esp in parks, is full of roundworm eggs anyway, so the snack she chose was unappealing but probably no more dangerous than other dirt…

  27. Ok…I thought I had the worst story until reading yours (sorry! LOL). My older son ate dried cat puke when he was about 18 months.


    Oh well…at least it’s organic! 😀

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