The website “petconnection.com” has been collecting data from pet owners whose pets have become ill or have died after consuming tainted food manufactured by Menu Foods and other companies. After only one month of collecting data, Petconnection.com has received 4,211 reports of deceased pets.
It will be impossible to determine exactly how many illnesses and deaths have occurred due to the tainted food, and Pet Connections data is unofficial. However, it is likely the fatalities reach much higher than the FDA’S confirmed cases.
The FDA has confirmed only 16 deaths, but admits the actual numbers may be higher, and has stated that they have received a lot of reports of ill pets:
“FDA received more than 12,000 reports during the past four weeks, which is more than twice the number of complaints that our consumer compliant coordinators typically receive in a year.” Stephen F. Sundlof, Director of the FDA Center for Veterinary Medicine.
Pet owners across the U.S. and Canada have expressed increasing alarm as the list of recalled foods and treats has grown. The latest Menu Foods recall came April 10 when it was announced that melamine was found in cans of food manufactured in an Ontario production plant. The facility had received one shipment of the tainted wheat gluten from a Menu Foods plant in Emporia, Kansas.
Menu Foods has updated their recall list, which can be found on their website at menufoods.com.
The contaminated wheat gluten was also used in some products made by the following companies:
Sunshine Mills Inc.: www.sunshinemills.com/press_release.html
Del Monte Pet Products: www.delmonte.com/petfoodrecall.html
Hills Pet Nutrition— (Prescription Diet m/d Feline Dry Food, Hills Pet Nutrition, Inc. Select Science Diet Savory Cuts Cat Food)
Nestle Purina Pet Care Company — Alpo® Brand Prime Cuts in Gravy Canned Dog Food, Mighty Dog® 5.3 Ounce Pouch Products.
In a recall that may be unrelated to the Menu Foods recall, two kinds of Natural Balance foods have now been voluntarily recalled. It is unknown at this time if the recall will be related to the Menu Foods recall. An announcement on their website stated that there have been consumer complaints and that they are pulling the following foods:
“…Venison and Brown Rice Dry Dog Food, and Venison and Green Pea Dry Cat Food. “
Note: Many pet foods do not contain wheat gluten at all, and many manufacturers have not used any wheat gluten from ChemNutra, but a number of pet owners are still uncertain which brands and products are safe. Most pet food manufacturers are assuring consumers that many of their products have not been recalled, and are not expected to be recalled.
For complete lists of pet foods that are involved in the Menu Foods recall, and associated recalls, please visit www.fda.gov