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Old 01-09-2006, 03:01 PM   #1
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Contaminated pet food kills dozens of dogs

This is horrible.

Diamond Pet Foods recalled 19 varieties containing toxic chemical

COLUMBIA, S.C. - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration reports that at least 76 dogs nationwide are believed to have died as a result of eating contaminated Diamond Pet Foods.

The company has recalled 19 varieties of dog and cat food because tests showed high levels of aflatoxin, a naturally occurring toxic chemical that comes from a fungus found on corn and other grains that causes severe liver damage in animals.

The company recalled products manufactured at its Gaston, S.C., plant from around September to November 2005. Based on sample testing, Diamond has narrowed down the exposure to food produced on Oct. 11, Brinkmann said Thursday.

The FDA and the South Carolina Department of Agriculture have launched investigations.

Customers who have purchased the recalled Diamond Pet Food manufactured in the South Carolina plant should immediately stop using it and return any remaining product to their retailer, according to the FDA.

The range of date codes being reviewed are "Best By 01-March-07" through Best By " 11-June-07".

FDA also has discovered that some of the recalled product was exported to at least 29 countries, including countries within the European Union. These countries have been notified.

Diamond officials say they are doing what they can to help affected pet owners.

“It’s going to take some time to take care of all these customers, and we’re going to do it,” said the company’s chief operating officer, Mark Brinkmann.

Diamond has promised to reimburse pet owners for vet bills and other costs associated with the aflatoxin poisoning, which officials now believe may include pets in Europe and other areas outside the country where the food is distributed.

The company set up a call center staffed with veterinarians. The call volume peaked at about 2,000 calls a day last week, Brinkmann said.

Shanika Stewart has been caring for her ailing 9-year-old chow, force-feeding the animal with a syringe six times a day since suffering permanent liver damage after eating contaminated dog food.

“I haven’t had any time to do anything but take care of her,” said Stewart, a 19-year-old nursing student at the University of South Carolina. “She’s the No. 1 priority. ... I get maybe four hours of sleep before she wakes me up.”

Aflatoxin poisoning symptoms
Aflatoxin comes from a fungus found on corn and other crops and can cause severe liver damage in pets. If your pet shows any of these symptoms contact your veterinarian immediately.

— Sluggishness
— Loss of appetite
— Jaundice (yellow whites of the eyes, gums, belly)
— Severe, persistent vomiting combined with bloody diarrhea
— Fever
Source: Food and Drug Administration


Through relocations from Army bases in Georgia, Oklahoma, Washington and now South Carolina, Cocoa has been a constant companion for Stewart, whose father is serving in Iraq.

When her own daughter died last year, Stewart said Cocoa helped her through her grief. “It was like she understood,” Stewart said. “She was my best friend.”

Severe liver damage
Stewart’s other dog, a 2-year-old pit bull named Chulo, died last month just hours after being diagnosed with liver failure. It was only then that the family learned of the recall.

Stewart initially thought Cocoa had refused to eat because she was depressed about losing Chulo. After the recall, the family vet confirmed aflatoxin poisoning in Cocoa, Stewart said.

Steve Shrum, president of the South Carolina Association of Veterinarians, said vets around the state were confused when puppies began showing signs of liver problems usually seen in older dogs.

“It takes such a small amount, and there’s pretty much nothing you can do with the process that will inactivate that toxin once it gets in the food supply,” he said.

Stewart says she has not spoken with anyone at the company despite several calls. The family has filled out an online form explaining their situation.

“You don’t get anybody to talk to and tell your story,” she said. “It’s like they’re not concerned. To me, it’s like they’re saying, ’Oh well, we’ll get to it when we get to it.”’

Brinkmann was sympathetic.

“We’re going as fast as we can,” he said. “I grieve with her, and I’m going to do everything I can to make sure we can do right by her.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report
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Old 01-09-2006, 03:06 PM   #2
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Aflatoxin comes from a fungus found on corn and other crops and can cause severe liver damage in pets. If your pet shows any of these symptoms contact your veterinarian immediately.

And corn isn't a natural diet for a dog anyway. Most dog foods use corn and grains as main ingredients in their food. Last time I checked, dogs were carnivores and should be on meat based diets. /
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Old 01-09-2006, 03:20 PM   #3
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Diamond?
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Old 01-11-2006, 12:35 PM   #4
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Originally posted by clarityat3am



And corn isn't a natural diet for a dog anyway. Most dog foods use corn and grains as main ingredients in their food. Last time I checked, dogs were carnivores and should be on meat based diets. /
YES. Well omnivores, actually, but your're correct. And this manufacturer makes cat food too. Cats are 100% carnivores so any cat food which has corn as one of the main ingredients is absolute crap.

I don't know for sure but my guess is these brands are bottom of the barrel quality (and price) wise.
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Old 01-11-2006, 12:36 PM   #5
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You'd be surprised how many pet foods tout themselves as "premium" and still have crap ingredients, nasty byproducts and who knows what else.
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Old 01-11-2006, 12:48 PM   #6
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How are dogs omnivores?

http://www.answers.com/topic/carnivore
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk: Dog#Classification
http://www.answers.com/topic/dog

From what I see, while some dogs can have omnivorous diets, they are still always carnivores.
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Old 01-11-2006, 03:33 PM   #7
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And dont give your dog those greenie treats either, my dog was recently sick from them and also others have died due to not bein able to digest them.
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Old 01-11-2006, 03:38 PM   #8
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I could list quite a few things to read about the poor quality of pet foods, and the treats they make aren't any better, really.
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Old 01-11-2006, 04:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by clarityat3am
How are dogs omnivores?

http://www.answers.com/topic/carnivore
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk: Dog#Classification
http://www.answers.com/topic/dog

From what I see, while some dogs can have omnivorous diets, they are still always carnivores.
They'll eat anything. And can thrive on a balanced diet of not only meat but veggies and (some) grains, too.
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Old 01-11-2006, 04:55 PM   #10
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Originally posted by clarityat3am
You'd be surprised how many pet foods tout themselves as "premium" and still have crap ingredients, nasty byproducts and who knows what else.
I know. It's sick. If anyone is interested I have a lot of literature on this, as well as lists and resources for REAL high quality foods. They're more $$$ but worth it.
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Old 01-11-2006, 04:57 PM   #11
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I know. It's sick. If anyone is interested I have a lot of literature on this, as well as lists and resources for REAL high quality foods. They're more $$$ but worth it.
I feed my fuzzball Wellness. I'm curious to see what list of foods you have.
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Old 01-11-2006, 04:59 PM   #12
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Originally posted by Catlady


They'll eat anything. And can thrive on a balanced diet of not only meat but veggies and (some) grains, too.
Veggies in moderation, yes. Grains, you're right, but less is more for that. I follow quite a few raw feeding sites (we'll save that debate for later as I've not gone that far!) and I've learned a LOT from them.
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Old 01-11-2006, 05:24 PM   #13
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I have friends who feed their dogs better than they feed themelves.
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Old 01-11-2006, 05:46 PM   #14
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Originally posted by clarityat3am


I feed my fuzzball Wellness. I'm curious to see what list of foods you have.
Wellness is THE BEST there is!!

PM me your email and I will shoot you my list (and I see we are in the same geography, I also have a great list of where to buy all the good stuff).
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Old 01-11-2006, 05:47 PM   #15
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Originally posted by clarityat3am


Veggies in moderation, yes. Grains, you're right, but less is more for that. I follow quite a few raw feeding sites (we'll save that debate for later as I've not gone that far!) and I've learned a LOT from them.
I love the Dr. Pitcairn book, great raw recipes for doggies.
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