Dogs Eating Money: It Happens More Often Than You Think

Cute Chihuahua puppy mouthing a wad of cash

Imagine how you would react if you found out your dog ate $500 cash.

Now imagine your horror upon realizing what you have to do to get it back (hint: you’ll be needing a clothespin and a box of sanitary gloves). How would you feel about your furry little buddy after that?

As you might have guessed, this is not a purely hypothetical exercise. As reported by the Helena Independent Record, it actually happened to Wayne Klinkel, who was traveling to Denver with his 12-year-old Golden Retriever named Sundance.

Wayne stopped at a restaurant for dinner with his wife, leaving Sundance to wait in the car alone. Apparently PO’ed at not being included, Sundance made this the most expensive pit stop ever by gobbling down five $100 bills that were stashed in a cubbyhole.

He left a single $1 bill untouched – which seems like an in-your-face type of gesture, if you ask me.

(Update: Sundance’s owner managed to retrieve fragments of the bills from the dog’s poop, and has gotten the U.S. Treasury to replace the money. Now that’s a hard-earned reward.)

This isn’t the only reported case of a dog eating cash – or even the most costly. Check out some of these examples of money munching mongrels:

  • In 2011, a Chow/Labrador mix swallowed ten $100 bills left in an envelope. In this case, the owners weren’t content to wait for money to work its way through. They got the dog to puke up nine of the bills by feeding it peroxide (yeah, the story would have been funnier without that part).
  • Also in 2011, a Scottish Terrier ate two inheritance checks worth $49,000. I guess he thought he should have been in the will.
  • In 2012, a Beagle named Arnie got into his owner’s bag and ate $275 in cash, which was never recovered. Amazingly, this was the dog’s second offense – he had eaten two $50 bills seven years earlier.

As you can see, these sorts of stories aren’t all that rare. Dogs will eat just about anything, food or nonfood.

In some cases, it’s because they intend to eat the object. In others, it’s because they like to chew stuff up and inadvertently end up ingesting some of it. For many dogs, paper is a particularly tempting snack – which explains why some of the dogs in the examples above went out of their way to get to the cash.

Fortunately, eating cash doesn’t hurt the dog (though it might hurt the dog’s relationship with its owner). The paper passes through their systems undigested before getting deposited in a pile of poop.

After a little money laundering, owners can sometimes get the cash replaced by the Federal Reserve.

Coins are a different story, as the metal poses a threat to the dog’s kidneys and liver. Earlier this year, a 13-year-old Jack Russell Terrier swallowed 111 pennies and had to have emergency surgery (he’s okay). If you think $1.11 is small change compared to the examples above, just think of the vet bill.