Archives: Peanut Butter, Part One.

6 Apr

This is the first Stuff Hank Eats archive post.  These are all the crazy instances where we were like, “He ate what?! …we should really write these down.”  The plan is to scatter these posts during bouts of good behavior, because those can’t last long, and times when we just can’t resist sharing Hank’s stomach’s war stories.

This is how the story goes…

I had left Hank and Alta home alone while I was at work one day.  I had recently moved into my studio apartment and still had an Aero bed inflated, serving as a makeshift couch/extra seating.  Hank had taken a liking to this bouncy flat bed, it didn’t require the effort it took to jump on the real bed, and was much bigger than his dog bed.

I walk in the door and the first piece of shrapnel I come across is a peanut butter jar, licked clean, wrapper shredded and the top chewed to oblivion.  The further I travel into the 500 square feet, I see a lovely (not pictured for your own good) puddle of liquid peanut butter barf on the aero bed.  Completely grossed out, I look to my two lovely companions for a guilty party.  Nothing.  Totally stoic, they both sat there staring at me, as if there are empty peanut butter jars laying around all the time…and I am crazy to look so surprised.

Disclaimer: The peanut butter jar was not left on a low coffee table or cupboard, but had just been bought at the grocery store and was sitting on the countertop with the rest of the non-perishables that I had hastily unloaded.  In order to get to the jar, the guilty party had to pull it down from the counter; proceed to pop the lid off (a task frequently simulated while holding a stuffed toy and removing it’s stuffing through an ear or ripped seam); peel back the paper/aluminum “freshness” seal and reveal 18oz of delicious, salty, nutty goodness.  Yes, you read correctly…the paper seal was peeled back, and we found it whole, and detached from the jar, not ripped or shredded. Apparently, a workday was more than enough time to accomplish these feats.

I begrudgingly cleaned up the disgusting regurgitated peanut butter from the cracks of the Aero bed, almost getting sick myself…as Alta and Hank sat perched, staring at me.  I decided to leave the two furry suspects at home, get away from the stinky peanut smell and go get some dinner out…convinced that I would figure out the guilty party later.

It was easy.

There are about 16 servings in an 18oz jar of peanut butter.  That’s about 256 grams of fat and more importantly… 2,400mg of sodium.  To put it in perspective for us with thumbs, think about sitting down with a spoon and eating two jars of peanut butter.  How would you feel?  Bloated? Gassy? Sick? Uncomfortable?

Check. Check. Check.

When I got home after dinner it was easy to tell which dog had committed the salty crime.  Alta was snoozing away in her bed, her conscience seemingly clear, unaware (or apathetic) of Hank’s uncomfortable situation.

Hank on the other hand, was in rough shape…

He was sprawled out on the bed, then slowly moved between the floor and his bed.  Visibly bloated, Hank would lay on one side, passing gas from both ends, then flip over to the other side, groan, and repeat.  It should have been a doggie Pepto commercial, minus the catchy tune.  It was pretty clear Hank wasn’t in any medical danger, but it was also clear that he was super uncomfortable.  I imagine it would be like that feeling after a particularly gluttonous Thanksgiving dinner, then polishing off all the leftovers, maybe stopping by the store for a few extra fixings that went on sale the day after.

Picture the saddest, fat, puffy puppy face you could imagine on this already cute (in a pitiful sort of way) dog and that’s what face we were looking at for the next two days.  The bloating went down, the bathroom antics (not pictured for everyone’s visual safety) lasted for a few days, and because we learned our lesson about leaving the peanut butter within paws reach…we’re not sure if Hank learned his about leaving it alone.

Stay tuned for the perfectly rational conclusion of Hank vs. Peanut Butter…cheers!

HUMAN TRANSLATION: Learn to reach.  Ordinarily, you wouldn’t think a dog – lacking thumbs, reasoning and long-term memory – would have a tough time getting into a peanut butter jar so gracefully.  Sure, any strong-jawed dog could chew a hole in the soft plastic and proceeding to create a giant mess of chewed plastic, gooey peanut butter and dog saliva.  But Hank not only popped the lid off the jar (turning it into a tiny red frisbee and then chewing it to oblivion afterwards) then peeled the paper seal away, revealing what he had been after.  Besides keeping peanut butter far, far away from our furry friends, we can learn a lesson from Hank and his stomach suffering.  Whatever goal is seemingly out of reach, high up on the counter (or in a toy box on a tall shelf), keeping focused and breaking down a large goal into smaller ones will make it easier to achieve.  To us, getting a scoop (or entire jar) of peanut butter is a no brainer;  but to Hank, with no thumbs, standing three feet below the edible target and never having screwed off a lid in his long two years…breaking it down into smaller tasks made his ultimate goal a reality, along with the following internal (and for us, external) agony.  So whatever your big goals may be: 5-year-plan, emotional growth, physical fitness, career achievements, lifestyle changes or financial benchmarks; make a list, draw a diagram, read your tarot cards, talk it out…whatever works for you, break it down into smaller, easier to manage goals and they’ll be yours sooner than you think.


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