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What happens when you give a dog a potato?

Grab a potato and your closest dog friend and help us find the answer.

For years, one unanswered question has sat atop the scientific community's list of great mysteries: What happens when you give a dog a potato? At last, we have the recording and data-analyzing technology to make our generation the one to find a satisfying answer, or at least begin to do so.

My results

One quiet night last week, my dog Trudy was relaxing on her bed, one ear inside-out, when I presented her with a rinsed, uncooked, medium-sized russet potato. Here, in abridged form, is what happened:

Trudy sniffed the potato, poked it a bit with her nose, then picked it up and carried it to her favorite spot in the corner of the apartment, where she gave the potato a few more prods and began to lick it. Then, one minute and eight seconds post-potato introduction (PPI), she began to nibble on the end of the potato. At this point, I took the potato away. Trudy was irritated, but once I explained how I didn't want her to eat a whole potato and was just exploiting her innate charm to advance my career of putting useless nonsense on the Internet, she understood.

So, that's what happens when you give my dog a potato. This is not a final answer. It is just one data point. To find the great truth, we need a lot more data, which is where you and your dog come in.

How you can help the Great Dogtato Experiment of 2015

1. Find a dog friend. Probably not a strange dog on the street. That would be weird.

2. Find a potato -- one big enough that the dog won't try to eat it whole. Don't cook it, but make sure it's not super dirty.

3. Wait until the dog is at rest. We don't want a pre-hyped dog.

4. Gently place the potato in front of the dog.

5. Watch what happens. If you have the means, film the dogtatoing and share the video and all your important data and notes in this form.


I waive any responsibility for upsetting or sickening your dog. Please consider the likelihood of those outcomes before proceeding. I recommend taking the potato away if the dog begins to eat it. You probably don't want to let your dog eat a whole potato. The Internet also suggests potatoes with green skin or any green parts still attached are bad for dogs, so avoid those.

Once again, here is the form to participate. I eagerly await you(r dog's) response so we can solve this unsolved mystery.

SB Nation archives: The best dogs in sports who don't have potatoes, yet (2013)