Share on ThriftyFun This page contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution! It's not just pets now, the chickens that you eat may have also been fed tainted food. Apparently ingredients that are not suitable for pets are used as feed for chicken.
You can unsubscribe at any time and we'll never share your details to Pet food and tainted parties. Comment Was this helpful? Searches for "toy recall" resulted in visits to Mattel. But his customers had nothing to fear, Bishop promised: Such byproducts posed no "health, safety or nutrition" consequences in Blue Buffalo's own food. Kidney failure in the animals was linked to foods manufactured in Thailand by Mars, Inc. It was previously known that melamine and cyanuric acid can form networks of hydrogen bondscreating a tile-like planar structure through molecular self-assembly. It did so after Dragonball z vegeta pictures began to fall sick and die during routine company taste tests of its wet-style pet foods, sold under nearly store- and major-label brands across North America. Or perhaps it's our empathy for animals that explains the difference in reaction.
Sex with a penis. Felines more sensitive to toxic chemical found in recalled food, FDA says
We continue to engage in the highest levels of monitoring and testing in the pet food industry. Michigan State University. The recalls are related to contaminated vegetable proteins, imported from China in and earlyused as pet food ingredients. When I opened up this can on Thursday night I saw a brown clump in the food, the Frankfort, Illinois, pet owner says. Two separate law firms are gathering information for potential class action lawsuits against Canidae and Nutrothe pet food manufacturers whose products are alleged to have caused widespread pet illness. The company, he added, has also taken steps to ensure a mold problem like this doesn't surface again. Half of its business comes from pet care products, including Pedigree Playboy girls of the big eight, Whiskas, Royal Canin and Cesar pet foods. One of Pft dogs is Pet food and tainted in the hospital because her kidneys are failing. Veterinarians, however, warn that animals do not show symptoms until about 70 percent of the kidney function is lost. Archived from the original on 29 April Read verbatim complaints and comments from consumers. Merrick Pet Care has made the decision to recall all Jr. The company, which fodo last month that it would no longer use any Chinese vegetable protein suppliers, said it had not received any confirmed cases of Pet food and tainted linked to the recalled products. Food and Drug Administration — that's a quote," Meade exclaimed. Archived from the original on 6 April
Menu Foods then converted itself into a Canadian tax dodge called an income trust, where management has one goal — to reduce costs and increase distribution.
- Sarah D.
- Beginning in March , there was a wide recall of many brands of cat and dog foods due to contamination with melamine and cyanuric acid.
The small number of confirmed reports of pet deaths bolstered by a far larger number of unconfirmed anecdotal reports suggests cats were more susceptible to poisoning by the chemical melamine that tainted the now recalled pet food, officials with the Food and Drug Administration and American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said Saturday. Testing by the FDA and Cornell University has found melamine in samples of recalled pet food as well as in crystal form in the urine and kidney tissue of dead cats.
Feline sensitivity a mystery Sundlof and others have not been able to explain why the chemical would have caused the kidney failure seen so far in the roughly 16 confirmed pet deaths, all but one in cats. There are anecdotal reports of hundreds more pet deaths. Sundlof also allowed that the tainted cat foods could have contained higher concentrations of melamine than did the dog foods. Purina said a limited amount of the food contained a contaminated wheat gluten from China. Earlier this month, Menu Foods became the first pet food manufacturer to recall its products.
It did so after cats began to fall sick and die during routine company taste tests of its wet-style pet foods, sold under nearly store- and major-label brands across North America.
Other than in the recalled products, melamine has not been found in other Menu Foods pet foods, the company said. Chemical an ingredient in plastic Melamine is used to make plastic kitchenware, glues, countertops, fabrics, fertilizers and flame retardants. It also is both a contaminant and byproduct of several pesticides, including cyromazine, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Rates of women who are opting for preventive mastectomies, such as Angeline Jolie, have increased by an estimated 50 percent in recent years, experts say. But many doctors are puzzled because the operation doesn't carry a percent guarantee, it's major surgery -- and women have other options, from a once-a-day pill to careful monitoring.
That study suggested the chemical increased urine output when fed to dogs in large amounts. For example, the flea killer permethrin is OK to use on dogs but lethal to cats, Hansen said. The same could be the case with melamine. The latter two companies have recalled a limited number of products since Friday. The wheat gluten, a protein source, was imported from China.
Sundlof said the recall could expand further, depending whether other pet food manufacturers also bought wheat gluten from the same supplier. There is no indication the wheat gluten entered the human food supply, he added.
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Show discussion. Pet health on NBCNews. Tainted pet food a bigger risk to cats than dogs Felines more sensitive to toxic chemical found in recalled food, FDA says Below: x Jump to text A greater sensitivity of cats to a chemical found in plastics and pesticides coul Video: Pet food worries Open in new window. Discuss: Discussion comments.
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On 23 March, Menu Foods said they will reimburse pet owners who can trace their pets' illnesses to the company's products. And veterinarians say several factors can cause gastrointestinal problems in dogs and cats, including changes in diet, newly developed sensitivities to pet foods, and viral infections. In the past year, consumers have filed more than complaints saying their dogs or cats suddenly became ill after eat NUTRO. No illnesses have been reported. Inside the can of chicken with gravy food Dianne T. Last year, the company issued a statement explaining that it had changed the foods formulation and that pets needed to be transitioned gradually from the old to the new formula. Archived from the original on 22 November
Pet food and tainted. Related Stories
But pet owners who complain to ConsumerAffairs. And they say its no coincidence that so many dogs and cats have become sick — with the same symptoms — after eating various flavors of that pet food. It is a fact and Im outraged that nobody is taking it off the shelf.
She was constipated for a few days, then had diarrhea, and finally vomiting and was always extremely thirsty. The last straw was her laying lethargic on the couch with white gums.
The vet said she had allergies, prescribed an antibiotic and cortisone and gave me a bag of Science Diet. She again had constipation, followed by horrible diarrhea, and finally vomiting yellow bile and white gums, Erin told us. There is no way that all these stories are just coincidences not if my dog is fine when she isnt eating NUTRO and when she is eating it, shes horribly sick. I have switched her back to Science Diet and all her symptoms are gone and her appetite has returned to normal.
After about five days, our six-year-old male Chihuahua became lethargic, groaned a lot, developed a fever, was not excited to go on walks, and lost excitement for anything that used to bring him joy.
My husband began to suspect it was the new food as he had only developed these symptoms after eating NUTRO. He has always been a healthy and active Chihuahua.
The couple took the dog to their vet, who ran tests but couldnt pinpoint the problem. He was given antibiotics and we are crossing our fingers they work. Our Chihuahua can barely walk, he is groaning in pain, and is extremely depressed. Across the country, a longtime NUTRO pet owner in Pennsylvania told us her dog suddenly became ill after eating the food.
At first everything seemed fine. Then my dog, who never urinated in my house, started having accidents frequently. She needed to go out constantly and would squat repeatedly, come in, and ask to go right back out. I took her to the vet and began treatment for bladder infection.
Upon finishing treatment it started all over again. Amys vet discovered crystals in the dogs urine, which also had a high PH balance. The vet put the dog on another medication. In the meantime other than the restless pacing to go outside, she seemed disinterested and lethargic, Amy says. Then she began having extremely loose bowel movements an awful bright yellow in the house. I couldn't believe my eyes. Could it really be the dog food I had trusted so much making my beloved pet ill?
Amy is now feeding her dog another brand of pet food. And Im thrilled to say she is her old self again. She no longer has to take any medicines and has no more accidents or uncontrollable urges. Thanks to this Web site and everyone who took the time to file a complaint, I have my healthy happy dog back. And hes convinced its not a fluke. We got our dog two weeks ago and our puppy was healthy when we got her, says Manny of Fresh Meadows, New York.
A week later, she started squatting to urinate, but only small drops or none at all came out. When she can urinate, it is frequent, in small amounts, and contains blood. She received a sonogram, culture test, and urinalysis test. The results showed that she may have a stone in her bladder. The blood in her urine is caused by the stone scraping the bladder walls. The urinalysis test showed that she had a high PH balance. I don't think it is a coincidence that I have the same exact problem as Amy, adds Manny.
Our puppy is still sick. It is hard to tell how many people at overseas military bases are feeding this food to their dogs and possibly killing them, says Michelle M. She reported those concerns to her supervisor, but said they were ignored. She later resigned. My Shar-peis are the most sensitive dogs I have ever owned, says Allison R. On the wrong food their hair falls out, their eyes weep and their ears get nasty.
It takes me a good 3 months of only NUTRO dog food in order to reverse the affects of the other food. I have found that the senior diet is what works best, not sure why, but it seems to keep my Shar-Peis looking healthy. I feed all of my dogs and cats Nutro products and they are just as healthy as they have ever been, says Brenda of Springfield, Tennessee.
They have healthy shiny coats and their stools are firm. Do a gradual transition from the old food, she said. If you dont, your dog will likely experience these issues.
Not every bout of diarrhea, constipation, bladder infection, liver and kidney failure and loss of excitement to go on walks should be attributed to food. Your first responsibility as a pet owner should be to take your dog to the vet before you blame anyone. Do your research and don't let any Web site diagnose your pet.
And she called the complaints weve received isolated reports of inaccurate information posted online. The company, however, set up a special a section on its Web site in response to the issues and concerns raised in the ConsumerAffairs.
NUTRO said it takes all customer complaints seriously and encouraged pet owners with concerns about the food to contact the company at Veterinarians have said its not uncommon for pets to have sudden bouts of vomiting, diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal problems. They also said a number of factors — pet food, stress, or a viral infection — could be the culprit. Unfortunately the cases are not consistent and appear to be anecdotal with no real definitive diagnostic findings, Dr.
Hansen said. Without any consistent trends in findings we can not do anything any further. This does appear to us to be a situation where bad things happen, but they are not likely food-related. Hansen, however, said consumers who suspect NUTROs food is a factor in their pets illnesses should have their animals examined by a veterinarian and document the problems.
I would also recommend that if they suspect the food is the problem, they should take a freezer bag full of it — along with the label information that has the products name and lot numbers — to their vet, he told us. If the vet suspects the food is the cause, the vet should then contact the company and FDA. If theres a problem, we need to document it and get supporting lab results.
The arguments back and forth don't mean much to anxious pet owners, who say its about time some federal agency investigated NUTRO and its products.
After so many complaints, how can this dog food still be on the market for consumers to purchase and feed to their dogs? Andrea G. Suddenly, 10 days ago, he started vomiting yellow bile 1- 2 times daily. It makes me sick to think that I might be the one responsible for my dog's vomiting by feeding him this food.
I can only hope that something is done, very soon, to prevent other pets from becoming ill. Jonathan Hood is a New York City attorney who practices Two separate law firms are gathering information for potential class action lawsuits against Canidae and Nutro , the pet food manufacturers whose products are alleged to have caused widespread pet illness.
Progressive Law Group, LLC, is currently gathering information from pet owners who say their dogs became sick as a result of eating Canidae products, or who have information that would be useful to the suit.
According to its website, the firm focuses mainly on environmental, energy, and consumer affairs issues. More information about the Canidae suit can be found online. Meanwhile, the Alabama firm of McCallum, Hoaglund, Cook, and Irby is gathering information for a potential class action lawsuit against the company that manufactures Nutro.
In spite of widespread complaints of pet illness, Canidae has yet to issue a voluntary recall of its foods. Last year, the company issued a statement explaining that it had changed the foods formulation and that pets needed to be transitioned gradually from the old to the new formula. Specifically, the company cited the new foods increased levels of meat protein and the increased overall complex carbohydrate quality.
However, angry consumers said Canidae was at best inconsistent in warning pet owners beforehand of the need for the gradual formula transition. Many claimed that neither the food nor the shelves on which it was stocked provided any warning that the formula had changed. Some consumers have speculated that the new formula, which contains carbohydrates such as corn and barley, came as a shock to their dogs systems, which had become accustomed to the old formulas more rice-centered composition.
In September , a lab report allegedly showed that a Canidae sample contained the painkiller acetaminophen, a charge which Canidae vehemently denied. Menu Foods, another large pet food manufacturer, was forced to issue a series of recalls in , after scores of dogs became sick, some experiencing kidney failure. At least 10 deaths were reported. The suit was brought on behalf of certain U. An explanation of the settlement and relevant court documents can be found at www. Two separate law firms are gathering information for potential class action lawsuits against Canidae and Nutro, the pet food manufacturers whose products are alleged to have caused widespread pet illness.
FDA is aware of the issue and is looking into it, according to a statement the spokesman sent us. We take very seriously any potential harm to pets from products regulated under the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act and encourage consumers to report their concerns to the FDA.
If warranted we will take appropriate action and notify the public. Pet owners say the 8 hickory smoked pork femur bones -- sold as treats -- have splintered and caused their dogs to become violently ill or even die. My dog ate the bone and died, said pet owner Christina N. The company denied my claim for vet bills. They said I chose to give my dog the bone. This was a very, very painful death for Buddy.
Many dogs have died from this product. I had a necropsy done and still they claim it wasn't their product. A Texas pet owner also blamed the death of her dog on the companys chew bones: I purchased the pet treat for my dog and it killed him, said Kriss L. Words cannot express my grief.
An Indiana pet owner told us her dog had to undergo surgery after chewing one of Dynamics Real Ham Bones. The dogs health problems, she said, surfaced ten minutes after it started chomping on the treat. I noticed it had broken apart, so I took it away from her and a short time later she was gravely ill, trying to vomit but couldnt, said Patti S.
She couldnt even drink water. Patti rushed her dog to the vet. They took X-rays and said she had splinters of the bone in her intestines and she had to go through surgery. Thank God I have a great vet because she is the reason my dog is still alive. Patti called Dynamic Pet Products about her dogs experience.
The company referred her case to its insurance carrier, which denied Pattis claim. They would not pay a dime, she said. They said they were not at fault. They said I was for not monitoring my dog closely enough. That night, one Bulldog threw up 5 times. Nadines vet ordered X-rays on the dog, but they did not reveal any blockage. The vet, however, blamed the chew bone for the dogs gastric problems, she said.
This is day three and she has not moved her bowels yet and we will have to have another trip to the vet. What about Nadines other Bulldog? She is moving her bowels, but they are full of bone, she said. Another pet owner told us her dog experienced similar problems after gnawing on one Dynamics chew bones. I bought a Real Ham Bone made by Dynamic and a few hours later my dog was throwing up and yelping when he had a bowel movement, said Maureen G.
I decided to Google the product and found out this has happened to a lot of pets. This product needs to be taken off the shelf, she added. How many dogs have to die first? Luckily, my dog will be okay. I bought it for him thinking that it would be safe and unfortunately the product isn't. The company did not return our call. Dynamics Web site states the Real Ham Bones are not recommended for aggressive chewers.
As with all natural bones, we recommend supervision during eating, the Web site points out. The companys Web site also states that its proud of its track record and reputation. Dynamic has not pulled any of its chew bones or treats off the market and pet owners are likely to still find them on store shelves. The FDA said pet owners can report any health problems their dogs experience with Dynamic Pet Products chew bones or treats to the agencys Consumer Complaint Coordinator in their region.
Pet owners say the 8 hick It was the most disgusting thing, she told ConsumerAffairs. I almost hurled and I have a strong stomach. When I opened up this can on Thursday night I saw a brown clump in the food, the Frankfort, Illinois, pet owner says.
I was like what is that? I flipped it over and it was a dead frog. I walked over to the kitchen sink because I thought I was going to throw up, she adds. It was gross. I had to call my son and he said, Oh my God its a frog, its a frog. Dianne called the company that makes the food, Mars Petcare US , to report the dead frog food.
And what got me mad is they offered me coupons for more dog food. I told them I dont want your coupons. Why would I want to give my dogs more of this food?
I will never buy or feed Pedigree canned food again, Dianne adds. I wont even donate what I have left to a shelter. Half the cans were chicken and half were beef, Dianne says. And my dogs have been eating other cans from this same case. Dianne is now worried that her dogs -- or someone elses -- could become sick from any Pedigree food made at the same time as the can with the dead amphibian.
My big concern is whats going into this food, she says. Whats going into this food that people are feeding their pets? Obviously, its not chicken. Theres a frog in that food a whole dead frog. And if theres a frog in there, what else is in the food?
Are there toxins in that frog? Everything I read about poisonous frogs said they keep their toxins in them after they after die. Does that mean the toxins were spread through Lord knows how many cans when the food was processed?
What else could the frog have contaminated? Dianne immediately contacted her veterinarian after she discovered the dead frog in her dogs food. I asked him what could happen if the dogs ate from a can that contained a dead frog, she says.
And he said they could have diarrhea, vomiting, and neurological problems. In the past few days, Dianne says her healthy, active dogs have experienced some mild signs of those problems. My dogs have had some loose bowels, says Dianne, who is now feeding them cooked rice and chicken. And my older collie suddenly turned up lame on Tuesday. She didnt want to get up and was holding up her back paw. My vet couldnt find anything wrong, but said to bring her back on Saturday.
It may be a pinched nerve and she is getting better. Mars customer service representative, however, told Dianne the dead frog did not pose any health risks to her dogs. She said they cant get any diseases from this because the food is cooked in the can so its sterile. But what kind of quality control is going on when a dead frog is in the food?
That frog had to be in the food when they prepared it. While its highly improbable that this could occur, were taking it very seriously and launching a full-scale investigation into this consumers claim. Mars added: We are sending a third-party to the consumers home today to collect the frog and deliver it directly to an independent lab for testing. Its important to note that canned pet food is cooked at high temperatures and processed on high speed equipment, making it very unlikely that a frog could become enclosed in a can.
Dianne told us on Saturday that no one with Mars or an independent lab came to her home on Friday to pick up the dead frog. Asked about the companys doubts concerning her claim, Dianne said: We figured theyd say that, but theres a cooked frog in this can of food.
Its legs are curled. I think theyre side-stepping this situation. Dianne also has a message to anyone else who doesnt believe she found a dead frog in her dogs can of Pedigree food. Why would I put a dead frog in my dogs food? I treat my dogs like people. I dont eat that stuff and dont expect my animals or anyone elses animals to do that, either.
What I want Mars to do is clean up their facility, she says. Frogs belong outside. They belong in a pond not in my dogs food. I also expect Mars to take care of my vet bills if my dogs get sick, but only it pertains to the dead frog. To protect other dogs from eating food that might contain dead frogs, Dianne also reported her incident with Pedigrees food to the U.
Food and Drug Administration. And theyve now opened a complaint about this, she says. I dont want anyone feeding their dogs something that is unhealthy.
Young Sarah D. Email Sarah Young. No illnesses have been reported. Customers who purchased the recalled products should dispose of them. Consumers with questions may contact customer service at , Links Views Date Comments Likes. Until now, the FDA has been mum about whether it was actively investigatin In all of the cases we've examined, the animals' The FDA has authority to block and detain any regulated products from ente In most cases, complete recovery is expected after discontinuation of feeding.
People handling the treats By Truman Lewis ConsumerAffairs. In her posting, Sherri urged other pet owners to contact the FDA and ask it to investigate. Third in a series Wysong is the third pet food maker in recent weeks to quietly pull some of its products off the market. Add another 15 varieties to the growing list of recalled pet foods. Since March, 18 companies have recalled more than 5, pet food products.
Cereal Byproducts on May 4 recalled the rice protein concentrate it received f Add Alpo to the list of pet food brands recalling wet pet food after a wave of dog and cat deaths throughout North America.
Problem Solved? Henderson offered his company's condolences to grieving pet owners. The only answer was the food. She died on July 13, Media wags its tail The media response to the dust-up illustrates the sorry effects of the cutback in newspaper reporting staffs and television's increasing use of empty-suit commentators filling positions once held by actual journalists.
Most of the complaints mirror one from Linda P. Thats when Erin rushed her dog to the vet. Not a fluke? Manny took his puppy to the vet, who prescribed amoxicillin. Gradual transition Brenda also had some advice to pet owners switching brands of food. Owners anxious The arguments back and forth don't mean much to anxious pet owners, who say its about time some federal agency investigated NUTRO and its products.
Read verbatim complaints and comments from consumers. Menu Foods Menu Foods, another large pet food manufacturer, was forced to issue a series of recalls in , after scores of dogs became sick, some experiencing kidney failure. More about pets According to its website, the firm focuses mainly on environment A Missouri pet products company is under investigation by the Food and Drug Administration FDA amid reports that scores of dogs have became seriously ill or died after eating the manufacturers treats.
Similar problems Another pet owner told us her dog experienced similar problems after gnawing on one Dynamics chew bones. An Illinois pet owner made what she calls a disgusting discovery when she recently opened a can of Pedigree dog food.
Inside the can of chicken with gravy food Dianne T. Dianne says she doesnt know what type of frog is in the food or if its poisonous. Mild symptoms Dianne immediately contacted her veterinarian after she discovered the dead frog in her dogs food. I also have no desire to sue Mars. Thats the last thing on my mind. Dianne, however, does expect Mars to take two specific actions.
The process of identifying and accounting for the source of the contamination and how the contaminant causes sickness is ongoing. The majority of recalled foods have come from a single company, Menu Foods of Streetsville, Ontario.
Menu Foods' recalled products alone represent nearly brands of cat and dog food, and as of 11 April, are the only brands known to have caused sickness in animals. Below is an overview of affected brands, as provided by the FDA and the companies:.
By the end of March, veterinary organizations reported more than pet deaths amongst nearly cases of kidney failure,  and experts expected the death toll to number in the thousands, with one online database already self-reporting as many as 3, deaths as of 11 April.
Food and Drug Administration has received reports of approximately animal deaths, including at least cats and dogs who have died after eating contaminated food, but have only confirmed 14 cases, in part because there is no centralized government database of animal sickness or death in the United States as there are with humans such as the Centers for Disease Control.
The cases involved cats and dogs, with 61 percent of the cats and 74 percent of the dogs having died. She also said the mortality rate is not likely to be representative of all cases, because survey respondents had more information to submit for animals that had died. A number of dogs were also reported affected in Australia, with four in Melbourne and a few more in Sydney. No legal action or repercussions have as yet occurred regarding these cases.
In order to be counted in our survey, you had to meet certain criteria We had to have confirmed exposure to the recalled pet food, proof of toxicity, and clinical signs of renal failure. So this is only a percentage of the deaths that are out there. In a potentially related incident in China, on 22 February , Xinhua reported at least 38 cats dying shortly after being fed with Xiduoyu, a brand of a "Tianjin-based cat food manufacturer".
A veterinarian referred to in the story said "test results from Beijing Animal Hospital showed the dead cats had suffered from kidney exhaustion and that the sick ones have kidney damage. Pet owners were advised to monitor their animals for the following signs of possible kidney failure that may be associated with the unknown toxicant : loss of appetite , lethargy , depression , vomiting , diarrhea , sudden changes in water consumption, and changes in the frequency or amount of urination.
It was advised that pets exhibiting these symptoms should be taken for veterinary care as soon as possible, even if the animal did not eat any of the recalled pet food, as these signs may be indicative of other illnesses. One of the largest veterinary hospital chains in the U.
Banfield's veterinarians treat an estimated 6 percent of the nation's cats and dogs, and their findings provide "the most authoritative picture of the harm done by the tainted cat and dog food," according to the FDA.
Based on analysis of data collected by more than hospitals and clinics in 43 states, out of every 10, cats and dogs seen in Banfield clinics, three developed kidney failure during the time pet food contaminated with melamine was on the market.
They reported more cases of kidney failure in cats than the expected "background rate," corresponding to a 30 percent increase. During that period, the Banfield vets saw , cats. According to Hugh Lewis, who analyzed the results for Banfield, extrapolating to the United States cat population may mean "several hundred cats a week across the country" were affected.
No similar statistically significant increase was seen among dogs, suggesting the contamination was more toxic to cats. As of 4 May, the FDA advised: "If your pet food is not listed [as recalled on its website], the pet food is not affected by the recall and you can continue to feed it to your pets; however, if your pet exhibits a sudden onset of symptoms including loss of appetite, lethargy, vomiting, stop feeding the pet food and contact your veterinarian.
The growing number of recalls has motivated at least one well-known animal protection organization, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals ASPCA to recommend "until this crisis is resolved Many nonprofit pet shelters rely on donated foods to feed the animals and remain financially stable, but due to the wide use of wheat gluten and other contaminated ingredients in many wet pet foods and the large portion of foods represented in the recall, many pet shelters have had to discard foods despite the financial burden of doing so.
Unable to locate the source of the renal failure exhibited by test subjects that consumed some of their wet food products, Menu Foods sent food samples to Cornell University between 13 March and 15 March for chemical analysis.
They too, were not immediately able to pinpoint the cause of the sicknesses, so they sent samples to the New York State Food Laboratory, a part of the federally funded Food Emergency Response Network. Sometime in mid-March, an "unnamed pet food company" reported to Cornell they had discovered an industrial chemical used in plastics manufacture, melamine , in internal testing of wheat gluten samples.
By 21 March, it became clear the common factor was in the wheat gluten used to thicken the gravy in the "cuts and gravy" style wet foods. By 27 March, Cornell had confirmed the presence of melamine in the originally recalled pet foods, the wheat gluten used in their manufacture, the cells of the dead pets, and in the urine samples from dead and sick pets.
You could see crystals in the wheat gluten. In addition to wheat gluten, products containing rice protein have also been contaminated with melamine. Natural Balance Pet Foods recalled two products on 16 April due to kidney damage associated with melamine contamination despite the products not containing wheat gluten. Despite the presence of the industrial chemical in both the food and in the animals, the FDA has made it clear they are still in the middle of an extensive investigation, and "not yet fully certain that melamine is the causative agent.
Prior animal studies have shown ingestion of melamine may lead to kidney stones , cancer or reproductive damage. The chemical is known to have a very low toxicity in rodents. The U. FDA knows of no studies of melamine involving felines and, if melamine is responsible, the increased sensitivity of cats is a mystery to officials.
One hypothesis is the poisoned cat foods might have higher concentrations of melamine than the dog foods. Stephen Sundlof, director of the FDA's Center for Veterinary Medicine, says " Melamine is not very toxic as a chemical, so we're wondering why we are seeing the kinds of serious conditions, especially the kidney failure, that we're seeing in cats and dogs We are focusing on the melamine right now because we believe that, even if melamine is not the causative agent, it is somehow associated with the causative agent, so it serves as a marker".
According to the FDA, "the association between melamine in the kidneys and urine of cats that died and melamine in the food they consumed is undeniable. Additionally, melamine is an ingredient that should not be in pet food at any level.
Researchers have focused on the role of melamine and related compounds in causing renal failure. Beginning on 19 April, researchers reportedly had ruled out aminopterin contamination and had found a "spoke-like crystal" in contaminated wheat gluten and rice protein concentrate and the tissues and urine of affected animals. It was previously known that melamine and cyanuric acid can form networks of hydrogen bonds , creating a tile-like planar structure through molecular self-assembly.
While some researchers have theorized the three latter chemicals might have been formed as the animals metabolized the melamine, or as byproducts of bacterial metabolism cyanuric acid is a known intermediate byproduct of bacterial metabolism of melamine , their presence in the crystals found in contaminated protein itself, combined with media reports of widespread adulteration with both melamine and cyanuric acid in China, has focused research efforts on their combined effects in animals.
Neither melamine nor cyanuric acid, a chemical commonly used in pool chlorination, have been thought to be particularly toxic by themselves. The current hypothesis is, although these contaminants are not very toxic individually, their potency appears to be increased when they are present together.
On 27 April, researchers from the University of Guelph , in Ontario announced they had created crystals chemically similar to the ones found in contaminated animals by combining melamine and cyanuric acid in the laboratory under pH conditions similar to those in animal kidneys.
In light of these findings, on 1 May, the American Veterinary Medical Association noted in a press release the "extremely insoluble" crystals formed in animal kidneys are suspected of blocking kidney function. Because you wouldn't see so much necrosis cell death and inflammation. On 8 May , the International Herald Tribune reported three Chinese chemical makers have said animal feed producers often purchase, or seek to purchase, the chemical, cyanuric acid, from their factories to blend into animal feed to give the false appearance of a higher level of protein , suggesting another potentially dangerous way that melamine and cyanuric acid might combine in protein products.
A toxicology study conducted at the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine after the recalls concluded the combination of melamine and cyanuric acid in diet does lead to acute renal failure in cats. They go away slowly, if at all, so there is the potential for chronic toxicity. Some pet owners have become concerned over the safety of all processed pet foods, and have chosen to forgo store-bought prepared pet foods in favor of preparing food from ingredients at home.
The popularity of books on home preparation of pet foods has rocketed on Amazon. Some veterinarians have pointed out that animal diets are difficult to maintain in terms of nutritional appropriateness and safety, and are best served by store-bought preparations, an assertion disputed by some practitioners of home-made animal foods. Many owners of pets stricken after consuming Menu Foods' product have considered filing lawsuits against the company, but are encountering difficulties with the valuation of the deceased pets.
While many pet owners consider their pets to be a "part of the family," lost pets have traditionally been treated as property, with the potential liability limited to the retail value of the animal. Some states define the monetary value of a pet for litigation or insurance purposes. Other states have allowed suits for punitive damages and emotional distress suffered in the loss of a pet.
After word of the recall and reports of animal deaths began to spread, Menu Foods was served with several individual lawsuits over the deaths of affected pets. On 20 March, after the death of her cat, a woman in Chicago , Illinois sued Menu Foods for negligence in delaying the recall.
As individual lawsuits were filed across the nation, an Ontario, Oregon family filed a class-action lawsuit against Menu Foods, citing emotional damage and economic loss. The lawyers filing the federal lawsuit noted Washington state , which has jurisdiction , had a history of favorable consumer protection precedents in prior pet-related lawsuits, but finding a set value for the lost pets may be difficult.
On 23 March, Menu Foods said they will reimburse pet owners who can trace their pets' illnesses to the company's products. By 5 April, the 20 March Chicago lawsuit expanded to federal class-action status, with over plaintiffs seeking punitive damages for emotional distress.
The plaintiffs have specifically accused Menu Foods of fraud , claiming the company may have known of a problem as early as December. Menu Foods faces 90 class-action lawsuits as a result of the contamination.
District Court Judge Hillman has ordered Menu Foods to have no contact with plaintiffs unless their attorneys are involved in the discussion, after lawyers from six firms representing pet owners claimed the company illegally attempted to contact their clients directly. Hillman has said "It seems to me that Menu Foods is out to do whatever Menu Foods wants to do in a way that could adversely impact the rights" of the plaintiffs.
A outbreak involving pet foods sickened more than 6, dogs and a lesser number of cats in Asia. Kidney failure in the animals was linked to foods manufactured in Thailand by Mars, Inc. Veterinarians in Asia initially blamed the problems on fungal toxins, but pathology tests conducted in found melamine and cyanuric acid present in renal tissue from both outbreaks.
According to pathologists: "These results indicate that the pet food—associated renal failure outbreaks in and share identical clinical, histologic, and toxicologic findings, providing compelling evidence that they share the same causation.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Main article: Timeline of the pet food recalls. Main article: Chinese protein export contamination. The New York Times. Retrieved Archived from the original on 28 March Retrieved 11 April USA Today. Archived from the original on Archived from the original on 8 April ABC News. Archived from the original on 28 September Archived from the original on 18 May Food and Drug Administration.
Archived from the original on 8 May Department of Agriculture and U. Scientific American. Archived from the original on 13 July
Tainted Pet Food Vs. Lead-Paint Toys - TIME
S health officials and an agricultural company said on Thursday. In this file photo veterinarian Tara Montgomery examines a cat named "Digit" in her Mississauga clinic March 30, A chemical linked to a huge U.
Melamine, used in plastics and fertilizer, has turned up in rice protein concentrate imported from China and shipped to five pet food manufacturers. Food and Drug Administration officials suspect the chemical, previously found in wheat gluten, led to earlier pet fatalities and illness.
The finding widens the number of dog and cat food products pulled from United States retailers since mid-March. More than brands of pet food have been already been recalled after reports of kidney failure. Wilbur-Ellis Co. An official at the Chinese firm denied responsibility and said contamination may have been occurred during shipment. The protein was shipped to five U. San Francisco-based Wilbur-Ellis said pet food makers using the protein should issue a recall but declined to name the manufacturers, although two have already issued recalls.
Natural Balance Pet Foods, has recalled its venison-flavored dog and cat foods after reports of vomiting and kidney problems. Tests have confirmed melamine in the products, which contain the rice protein, the FDA said. The Blue Buffalo Co. Overall, the FDA has received more than 15, reports of pet illnesses so far, he added.
Officials have confirmed 16 deaths but believe the actual number could be higher. The expanded recall follows an earlier mass recall by Canada-based pet food manufacturer Menu Foods Income Fund, which in March said its products contained wheat gluten from China tainted with melamine.
Other makers, including Colgate-Palmolive Co. Democrats Sen. Richard Durbin of Illinois and Rep. One theory is that adding melamine artificially boosted protein measurements and thereby the value of the ingredients. FDA officials said they are actively checking all shipments of rice protein and wheat gluten imported into the United States.
The rice protein did not appear to be as widely used as the gluten, they said. The agency has also received a report about tainted corn gluten used in South Africa, they added, but has no information that it has been imported into the United States.
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