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-   -   Raw cookie dough kills kids and dogs (http://message.snopes.com/showthread.php?t=39046)

snopes 30 November 2008 06:05 PM

Raw cookie dough kills kids and dogs
 
Comment: I'm 58 years old and have recently had 2 different people tell me
that eating raw cookie or bread dough can kill small children and/or dogs.
There's nothing on your website either yea or nay.
Please advise?

pirateslife 30 November 2008 06:42 PM

I would have died several times over as a small child, since whenever I helped Mom make rolls, biscuits, pizza dough, or cookies, I always ate some raw dough. However, Mom did make sure to not let me have more than a couple of cookie cutters worth of dough. Raw eggs haven't killed me yet (yes, I still lick my pancake batter, too). And no, the yeast did not rise in my stomach and cause my poor tummy to explode.

geminilee 30 November 2008 07:16 PM

If raw cookie dough could kill children (or dogs) it would not be a rumor, it would be a documented fact. There are (admittedly non-scientific) experiments carried out probably many thousands of times every day, for probably as long as cookies have been in existence. Surely someone would notice thousands of kids dropping dead from the stuff daily.

Aimee Evilpixie 30 November 2008 07:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by geminilee (Post 813448)
If raw cookie dough could kill children (or dogs) it would not be a rumor, it would be a documented fact. There are (admittedly non-scientific) experiments carried out probably many thousands of times every day, for probably as long as cookies have been in existence. Surely someone would notice thousands of kids dropping dead from the stuff daily.

This isn't strictly fair. It could very well kill small children or dogs--if it contains raw eggs contaminated with salmonella. In that case, it would be the salmonella causing the death, not the cookie dough per se.

Arriah 30 November 2008 07:32 PM

Is the OP perhaps thinking that the wad of dough could clog up the digestive system of a small critter (human or otherwise)? I know that a piece of peanut butter taffy was enough to keep my dog quiet and chewing for a good 20 minutes, I could see someone taking that information and extrapolating (wrongly) that a larger quantity of something sticky would shut them up for good.

DoubleNaughtSaleen 30 November 2008 07:41 PM

Our Golden ate 3 uncooked yeast rolls one year. Other than a terrible upset tummy, she was fine. She lived to be 13!

Tarquin Farquart 30 November 2008 07:45 PM

I've eaten dough before now, but I'd probably avoid it due to the raw eggs.

geminilee 30 November 2008 08:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aimee Evilpixie (Post 813453)
This isn't strictly fair. It could very well kill small children or dogs--if it contains raw eggs contaminated with salmonella. In that case, it would be the salmonella causing the death, not the cookie dough per se.

Contracting salmonella severely enough to cause death is very rare. Salmonella's case fatality rate is only .0078%, and most of those are very likely caused by commercial or institutional foods (in addition to non-food sources, such as handling reptiles.)

Roadsterboy 01 December 2008 12:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aimee Evilpixie (Post 813453)
This isn't strictly fair. It could very well kill small children or dogs--if it contains raw eggs contaminated with salmonella. In that case, it would be the salmonella causing the death, not the cookie dough per se.

I have a feeling that the rumor from the OP is simply an exaggeration of the fact that there's an increased risk of getting salmonella poisoning from the raw eggs in the dough.

Strictly anecdotal:

My junior high sold Otis Spunkmeyer cookies back in the day, and they would bake them at the stand from the prepared, refrigerated dough. Besides the cooked cookies you could also just buy the little pucks of refrigerated dough. Eventually they had to stop this because (and I am hazy here) either someone at our school, or someone at a nearby school that also sold the cookies, got sick because the dough had been stored at too warm a temperature.

-RB

llewtrah 01 December 2008 05:50 AM

A few years ago, a scare story came round one of the yahoogroups I'm on. It was purportedly an email from a veterinary nurse who had battled to save a collie that had eaten raw dough. The dough continued to expand in the dog's stomach until it spilled out into the oesophagus, rose up and also clogged the trachea so the vet staff couldn't get a tube into the dog's airways. The dog allegedly suffocated due to raw dough.

This rings false in many ways. Even if the dough continue to rise (and digestive acids hadn't put a stop to it) when a dog's stomach gets uncomfortable, it vomits. It doesn't simply let the expanding dough track back up towards its mouth. When the stuff hits the cardiac sphincter (the top valve of the stomach), the stomach contracts to get rid of the stuff.

The alternative claim was that the stomach burst from expanding dough. I've seen Mythbusters doing experiments with fizzy pop and stuff in a stomach and stomachs expand a great deal. Again, the dog would puke from discomfort before its stomach got anywhere near bursting.

I'm guessing the deadly raw dough relates to that scare story of suffocation by expanding dough that did the rounds a few years back.

The Masked Doodler 01 December 2008 04:07 PM

So... Why would they sell cookie dough ice cream?

Sly Dog 01 December 2008 06:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by llewtrah (Post 813767)
A few years ago, a scare story came round one of the yahoogroups I'm on. It was purportedly an email from a veterinary nurse who had battled to save a collie that had eaten raw dough. The dough continued to expand in the dog's stomach until it spilled out into the oesophagus, rose up and also clogged the trachea so the vet staff couldn't get a tube into the dog's airways. The dog allegedly suffocated due to raw dough.

This rings false in many ways. Even if the dough continue to rise (and digestive acids hadn't put a stop to it) when a dog's stomach gets uncomfortable, it vomits. It doesn't simply let the expanding dough track back up towards its mouth. When the stuff hits the cardiac sphincter (the top valve of the stomach), the stomach contracts to get rid of the stuff.

The alternative claim was that the stomach burst from expanding dough. I've seen Mythbusters doing experiments with fizzy pop and stuff in a stomach and stomachs expand a great deal. Again, the dog would puke from discomfort before its stomach got anywhere near bursting.

I'm guessing the deadly raw dough relates to that scare story of suffocation by expanding dough that did the rounds a few years back.


slightly off topic, but we had a goat die from eating dry grain. It got into the grain crib, ate a belly full, and then took a drink of water. The grain soaked up the water and expanded. The goat died.

Aimee Evilpixie 01 December 2008 06:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sly Dog (Post 814194)
slightly off topic, but we had a goat die from eating dry grain. It got into the grain crib, ate a belly full, and then took a drink of water. The grain soaked up the water and expanded. The goat died.

Can goats not vomit?

CSGirl 01 December 2008 06:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aimee Evilpixie (Post 814196)
Can goats not vomit?

Horses can't, so it wouldn't surprise me.

Aimee Evilpixie 01 December 2008 06:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CSGirl (Post 814198)
Horses can't, so it wouldn't surprise me.

I was wondering if having a more complicated digestive system would cause a goat to be unable to vomit. I mean, I don't think a cow could vomit, what with having four stomachs...

geminilee 01 December 2008 06:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Aimee Evilpixie (Post 814200)
I was wondering if having a more complicated digestive system would cause a goat to be unable to vomit. I mean, I don't think a cow could vomit, what with having four stomachs...

I think it would depend on what stomach you are talking about. Cows regurgitate all the time; that is what cud is. Not sure if they could bring it up from the deeper stomachs, though.

Horses have a pretty simple digestive system (also horribly inefficient, which is why horse poop doesn't smell as bad as, say, pig or people poop; it is mostly grass still.)

Beejtronic 01 December 2008 07:45 PM

I don't have much to add scientifically, but if this were true me and my friends would be ridiculously dead by now. We used to split a tube of raw dough between us at sleepovers.

Maque 01 December 2008 11:59 PM

First things first--a cow has one stomach with four chambers, not four different stomachs. :)

And nope, cows can't vomit either. Their cud is the only thing they can really regurgitate; there's a problem among cattle grazing in less safe pasture where they'll ingest something improper (my uncle had a case of a heifer eating a screw not too long ago) and then they'll be sick and drowsy and will refuse to eat because it hurts them too much.

In other news: I am currently eating some raw cookie dough. It is delicious.

Eddylizard 02 December 2008 12:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Maque (Post 814451)
In other news: I am currently eating some raw cookie dough. It is delicious.

We'll miss you. :D

Roadsterboy 02 December 2008 01:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Masked Doodler (Post 814050)
So... Why would they sell cookie dough ice cream?

I always thought that the "cookie dough" in the ice cream wasn't real cookie dough, cause it'd freeze too hard. I know someone who works for an ice cream company-I'll have to ask next time I see them.

I should also go get some cookie dough ice cream....

-RB


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