Mmm.. yummy aluminum paint!
July 15, 2011 8:04 AM   Subscribe

Mefites, did mice really try to eat the paint off my can of carbonated caffeine and supposed energy-inducing supplements?

This can was on a shelf in my garage near the door into the house. It had a partner of a different flavor that has no missing paint at all. Only this side is missing paint, the rest is untouched. (That might be because the untouched side was facing the other can)

There were no flecks of paint on the shelf and there is no scratch marks on the metal to indicate something was trying to crawl up it.

I know I didn't buy it like that and the paint-disappearing act didn't happen until recently because I moved the can a few months ago.

My best guess is that some mouse found the paint tasty, or was otherwise trying to get to the contents of the can. I intend to wash the outside before I drink from it, but what do you guys think? Have you ever encountered something like this before?

Also, how determined do you have to be to scrape paint off an aluminum can? Digging my nail into the untouched side doesn't even remotely mar it.
posted by royalsong to Food & Drink (3 answers total)
It's possible the paint just wasn't properly bonded to the can in that area, and that some combination of heat, humidity, pressure, and friction caused it to flake away. I've encountered this before with various labels that have been printed directly onto a plastic or metal surface.

I think it's extremely unlikely that a rodent could manage to eat the paint off without leaving any other trace (claw marks, other cans affected, poop in the area).
posted by phunniemee at 8:10 AM on July 15, 2011

No marks or scratches leads me to agree with phunniemee. Is there a chance that side of the can was exposed to some environmental stress the other side (and other can) wasn't? Direct light, significant heat?
posted by penduluum at 8:18 AM on July 15, 2011

Yeah, mice would leave marks. Also they would go along they edges where they can get their teeth into it, not on the large flat surfaces. Besides, they'd only chew on a can to get to the contents. (and they'd be in for a fizzy surprise!)

It's been sitting around for months? I suspect either you just missed noticing it before, or it rubbed/washed/bleached off somehow.

There's no can of paint-stripper sitting on the shelf above it, right?

Snails will actually strip posters from walls for the glue. They can make awesome maze-like patterns.
posted by HFSH at 9:38 AM on July 15, 2011

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