Rat Poison Found in Recalled Pet Food

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by MacNut, Mar 23, 2007.

  1. macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #1
    ALBANY, N.Y. (March 23) - Rat poison was found in pet food blamed for the deaths of at least 16 cats and dogs, but scientists said Friday they still don't know how it got there and predicted more animal deaths would be linked to it.

    After the announcement, the company that produced the food expanded its recall to include all 95 brands of the "cuts and gravy" style food, regardless of when they were produced. The company also said it would take responsibility for pet medical expenses incurred as a result of the food.

    The substance in the food was identified as aminopterin, a cancer drug that once was used to induce abortions in the United States and is still used to kill rats in some other countries, state Agriculture Commissioner Patrick Hooker said.

    The federal government prohibits using aminopterin for killing rodents in the U.S. State officials would not speculate on how the poison got into the pet food, but said no criminal investigations had been launched.

    The pet deaths led to a recall of 60 million cans and pouches of dog and cat food produced by Menu Foods and sold throughout North America under 95 brand names. Some pets that ate the recalled brands suffered kidney failure, and the company has confirmed the deaths of 15 cats and two dogs.

    The company expanded the recall - which initially covered only cans and pouches of food packaged from Dec. 3 through March 6 - after the FDA alerted it that some products remained on store shelves.

    There is no risk to pet owners from handling the food, officials said.

    The Food and Drug Administration has said the investigation into the pet deaths was focused on wheat gluten in the food. The gluten itself would not cause kidney failure, but it could have been contaminated, the FDA said.

    Bob Rosenberg, senior vice president of government affairs for the National Pest Management Association, said it would be unusual for the wheat to be tainted.

    "It would make no sense to spray a crop itself with rodenticide," Rosenberg said, adding that grain shippers typically put bait stations around the perimeter of their storage facilities.

    Scientists at the New York State Animal Health Diagnostic Center at Cornell University and at the New York State Food Laboratory tested three cat food samples provided by the manufacturer and found aminopterin in two of them. The two labs are part of a network created after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks to keep the nation's animals and food supply safe.

    "Any amount of this product is too much in food," Hooker said.

    Aminopterin is highly toxic in high doses. It inhibits the growth of malignant cells and suppresses the immune system. In dogs and cats, the amount of aminopterin found - 40 parts per million - can cause kidney failure, according to Bruce Akey, director of Cornell's diagnostic center.

    "It's there in substantial amounts," Akey said.

    Donald Smith, dean of Cornell's veterinary school, said he expected the number of pet deaths to increase. "Based on what we've heard the last couple days, 16 is a low number," Smith said.

    recalled food:
    http://www.menufoods.com/recall/product_dog.html
    http://www.menufoods.com/recall/product_cat.html

    Experts advise owners to call their veterinarian if a pet has eaten recalled food and shows symptoms of possible kidney failure. An animal could be in trouble if it:

    · Stops eating
    · Appears tired and lifeless
    · Seems excessively thirsty
    · Urinates much more than usual
    · Vomits
    · Has diarrhea
    · Seems to have abdominal pain
     
  2. macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

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    #2
    I wish my neighbors dog wold eat some of that. Damn thing barks all night.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #3
    And if I owned that dog I would tell it to bark louder. Dogs bark its what they do.
     
  4. macrumors 65816

    Bobdude161

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    #4
    And that's when you poison your neighbor.
     
  5. macrumors regular

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    Los Angeles
    #5
    Some people just shouldn't be able to have a dog....

    I heard on the news that since pets are not seen as family members, but property, there's a limit to what some of these unfortunate pet owners with poisoned pets (I've seen quite a few on the television in the past few days...haven't you....it's pretty sad) can sue the pet food company.

    So, I guess we have to go with some sort of organic pet food?

    And did anyone see why they are saying that it is just wet pet food (pouches and cans) that is part of this recall and not the dry stuff? Would the dry stuff have been processed at a different plant with different ingredients that weren't affected?
     
  6. thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #6
    It is only pet food by one company. Other companies are not affected. Dry food is probably made in a different factory.
     
  7. macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #7
    Did you miss the bit about it being sold under 95 different brand names?
     
  8. thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #8
    But one company made it. I don't think they make dry food.
    http://www.purina.com/company/press/2007/MightyDog.aspx
     
  9. macrumors 68030

    ReanimationLP

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    #9
    Heh, I knew the store brands were the same as the premium stuff with a different label.

    I feel bad for those who were suckered into buying the premium name like Iams or Predigree.
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    mikemodena

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    #10
    I'm so glad I always buy my cat the Stop&Shop brand :D
     
  11. macrumors 68030

    princealfie

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    #11

    Hilarious! Actually my sister and I used to feed the neighbor's dogs some weeds back when I lived in Kentucky. Man, that's why they call it the bluegrass state :)
     
  12. macrumors 65816

    Bobdude161

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    #12
    They would eat weeds? Would the weeds make em sick?
     
  13. macrumors 65816

    psycoswimmer

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    #13
    My friend's dog had kidney failure because of the tainted food. :(
     
  14. macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    #14
    It is actually quite sad. My business banker's dog died about 2 weeks ago. He didn't know why until the news broke and I guess he has a lawyer and there'll be a class-action suit. It's really sad though because in the end, it's hard to price out the cost of a loved pet.
     
  15. macrumors 65816

    Bobdude161

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    #15
    3/5 compromise
     
  16. macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

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    #16
    Your neighbors must love you. What makes people like you think they own the frickin street? Are you just born with an ******* mentality or do you genuinely think your needs are more important than everyone else?
     
  17. thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #17
    No I had a neighbor like you that hated animals and would yell and scream more then the dog ever could.
     
  18. thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #18
    I think you will see big pay outs after all the cases are settled.
     
  19. macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

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    #19
    Hmmmm, never yelled or screamed at a dog before. Seems kind of pointless. But tonight I'll try some rat poison mixed in a few hot dogs. Great thread, thanks for the idea.
     
  20. thread starter macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #20
    And if your lucky you will go to jail for doing it.;)
     
  21. macrumors 68040

    DakotaGuy

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    #21
    http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=2975912&page=1&US=true

    Interesting piece of information here...
    "Investigators, meanwhile, are looking into whether the rat poison came into the United States on an ingredient used in the recalled food. ABC News has learned that Menu Foods bought wheat gluten, the only ingredient changed in its plants, from China. That possibility raises questions about the safety of pet and other food products in the United States."

    Question one is WHY ON EARTH are we now buying Chinese wheat when we have a HUGE abundance of good quality wheat raised in North America? I know probably because it is cheaper...just wait until the bread companies decide that Chinese wheat is cheaper and start to put it into products that people eat? Scary! I would imagine there are very few laws that regulate the safety of food products in China.

    I grew up on a wheat and cattle farm in South Dakota and hearing this makes me sick. We worked hard to provide everyone with a safe and high quality product and now because of money these companies won't even spend a few more dollars to buy domestic grain.
     
  22. macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #22
    I don't like small dogs and their barking either, but god I hope you're right.
     
  23. macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #23
    Which is a shame, isn't it? I'd be more upset over the loss of my dog than I would be over the loss of some of my family members.

    Fortunately, we feed our dog Science Diet which isn't affected. But I really feel sorry for anyone who lost their pet :(
     
  24. macrumors 6502a

    runplaysleeprun

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    #24
    I've already thrown out most of the empty cans, but I had a brand of wet cat food on the list, just not sure about the dates/kinds (salmon, chicken, beef, mystery meat). I got two kittens about a month or 2 ago, but they seem to be doing fine right now at any rate.
     
  25. macrumors 68000

    MACDRIVE

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    #25
    Kansas City Star


    Why did they have to test it on cats, why not a rodent of some kind? :confused:
     

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