Pet Loss Support on Facebook

for those of you who frequent facebook, i have created a fan page for you to join and talk about your losses.

Iams and Eukanuba Dog and Cat Food Recall

and Eukanuba Dog and Cat Food Recall

August 14, 2013 — The Procter and Gamble Company of Cincinnati, Ohio has announced it is voluntarily recalling specific lots of its dry pet foods because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

Iams and Eukanuba Dog and Cat Food Recall

Iams Recall August 2013

The recall has been confirmed in a Food and Drug Administration News Bulletin dated August 14, 2013.

The lots were distributed in the United States and represent about one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) of annual production.

According to the company, no Salmonella-related illnesses have been reported to date in association with these product lots.

The affected products were made during a 10-day window at a single manufacturing site. P&G’s routine testing determined that some products made during this timeframe have the potential for Salmonella contamination.

As a precautionary measure, P&G is recalling the potentially impacted products made during this timeframe.

No other dry dog food, dry cat food, dog or cat canned wet food, biscuits/treats or supplements are affected by this announcement.

What’s Being Recalled?

Iams Eukanuba Recall Lot Numbers

About Salmonella

Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.

Rarely, Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.

Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

This issue is limited to the specific dry pet food lot codes listed below. This affects roughly one-tenth of one percent (0.1%) of total annual production.

What to Do?

Consumers who purchased a product listed above should stop using and discard the product immediately. You may also contact the company toll-free at 800-208-0172 (Monday through Friday, 9 AM to 6 PM ET).

Or visit their websites at www.iams.com or www.eukanuba.com.

You can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.

Or go to http://www.fda.gov/petfoodcomplaints.

Multiple dog food recalls this last week

There have been multiple dog food recalls this last week. Please check these websites if you feed any of these brands.

Canidae
http://www.canidae.com/info/"]http://www.canidae.com/info/

Natural Balance
http://www.naturalbalanceinc.com/home/NB_recall.html

Wellness
http://wellnesspetfood.com/news.aspx

Diamond
http://diamondpetrecall.com/diamond-expands-voluntary-recall/
including these brands:
Chicken Soup for the Dog Lovers Soul
Taste of the Wild
Country Value
Premium Edge
Professional
4Health
Diamond Naturals
Kirkland

May 2, 2012 FDA update on Chicken Jerky Treats from China
http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/ProductSafetyInformation/ucm295445.htm

Cat food recall from Purina

See Info Here

Purina is recalling 3.5 lb. and 7 lb. bags of Purina One Vibrant Maturity dry cat food. Affected bags have a best buy date of May, 2012. They are being recalled for possible salmonella contamination. Please pass the word around to your fellow pet owners. If we prevent one cat from getting sick – it’s worth it. Thanks.

Hold the Onions for Cats

Hold the onions to help ensure good health for your cat

Kitties don't eat onions

*New Finding* Heinz body anemia is a red blood cell abnormality that can develop in cats who eat onions. Symptoms include fever, lethargy, vomiting, depression, and loss of appetite and require a veterinarian's immediate attention. In larger doses, onions can cause kidney damage or worse. Keep onions in any form -- raw, cooked, powdered, or dried -- out of your cat's diet.

P&G recalls Iams Veterinary Formulas Feline Rena l (DRY) 5.5 lbs

Link: http://lightning-strike.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=5923

ALERT! P&G is recalling two lots of Iams Iams Veterinary Formulas Feline Rena l(DRY) 5.5lbs because it could be contaminated with salmonella. The products are available by prescription through veterinary clinics. See the link below for how to see if your food is affected. Anyone owning the food should throw it out. Customers seeking more information or a refund may call P&G at 833-894-4458.

See full story here

The Five Stages of Grief from the Death of a Pet

Preparation and learning to cope with loss...what you can expect to go through.

The First Stage: Denial

Denial is the initial response of many pet owners when confronted with a pet's terminal condition or sudden death. This rejection seems to be the mind's buffer against a sharp emotional blow.

The Second Stage: Bargaining
This stage is well documented in the human grieving process. Many times, faced with impending death, an individual may "bargain" - offering some condition if the loved one is spared. The hope that a pet might recover can foster reactions like, "If Sam recovers, I'll never skip his regular walk . . . never put him in a kennel when I go on vacation, . . . never. . . "

The Third Stage: Anger
Recognizing anger in the grief process is seldom a problem; dealing with anger however, often is. Anger can be obvious, as in hostility or aggression. On the other hand, anger often turns inward, emerging as guilt. Many veterinarians have heard the classic anger response, "What happened? I thought you had everything under control and now you've killed my dog!" Another standard: "You never really cared about Rover. He was just another fee to you, and I'm the one who has lost my pet!"

Such outbursts help relieve immediate, frustrations, though often at the expense of someone else. More commonly, pet owners dwell on the past. The number of "If only . . ." regrets are endless: "If only I hadn't left the dog at my sister's house . . ." "If only I had taken Kitty to the veterinarian a week ago . . ." Whether true or false, such recriminations and fears do little to relieve anger and are not constructive. Here, your veterinarian's support is particularly helpful.

The Fourth Stage: Grief
This is the stage of true sadness. The pet is gone, along with the guilt and anger, and only an emptiness remains. It is now that the support of family and friends is most important and sadly, the most difficult to find. A lack of support prolongs the grief stage. Therefore, the pet owner may want to seek some help from their veterinarian, pet cemeterian, or from a professional counselor.

It is normal, and should be acceptable, to display grief when a companion animal dies. It is helpful, too, to recognize that other pet owners have experienced similar strong feelings, and that you are not alone in this feeling of grief. Don't ever feel embarrassed or ashamed. Your pain is very real and your loss a heavy one.

The Final Stage: Resolution
All things come to an end - even grieving. As time passes, the sadness evolves into memories of joyful times. And, more often than not, part of the remedy lies in a new pet, a new companion animal to fill the need for a pet in the household. Keep in mind, you're not replacing your beloved friend. Nothing can ever do that. You're filling a very deep void in your heart with new love for a new companion. It's time to complete the healing.

USPS Stamps to the Rescue - Food for Shelter Pets

Link: http://www.stampstotherescue.com/

Starting April 30th you can buy stamps at the post office that help to buy food for shelter pets. You can pre-order them online. Please pass the word to all of the animal lovers you know.

Buy Stamps for Food for Shelter Animals

http://www.stampstotherescue.com

Mystic Minerals Jewelry, Handmade Artisan Jewelry

Link: http://www.mysticmineralsjewelry.com

A good friend of mine just put up a new custom jewelry website, and 10% of her sales go to animal rescue charities!

Mystic Minerals Jewelry donates 10% of sales to animal rescue charities. Handmade wire wrap artisan jewelry with healing minerals, shells, crystals & beads.

www.mysticmineralsjewelry.com

Hand Stamped Pet Loss Sympathy Cards

attractive, one of a kind hand stamped sympathy cards for pet loss.

Hand Stamped Pet Sympathy Cards



Pet Loss Website of the Month

Rainbow Bridge Jewelry Pet Memorial Jewelry


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Link: Rainbow Bridge Jewelry Pet Memorial Jewelry

Another sponsor of the site, Rainbow Bridge Jewelry helps you memorialize and keep your pet near you and in your heart forever. The company custom crafts dichroic glass pendants with a small amount of your pet’s cremated remains permanently fused between the layers of glass, creating a beautiful & lasting memorial to your pet that can be kept close to your heart.

Free Phone-Based Pet Loss Hotline

The College of Veterinary Medicine at Washington State University offers a free phone-based pet loss hotline for pet loss support, death of a pet, dying pet. Staffed by veterinary students, trained by a licensed therapist, as well as a pet memorial site where pet owners can post stories and photos in memory of their pets.

http://www.vetmed.wsu.edu/PLHl/

Pet Food Recall: Nutro Products, Dry cat food products

Go to the Nutro Products website for full info, below is their press release....

Franklin, Tennessee (May 21, 2009) -- Today, Nutro Products announced a voluntary recall of select varieties of NUTRO® NATURAL CHOICE® COMPLETE CARE® Dry Cat Foods and NUTRO® MAX® Cat Dry Foods with “Best If Used By Dates” between May 12, 2010 and August 22, 2010. The cat food is being voluntarily recalled in the United States and ten additional countries. This recall is due to incorrect levels of zinc and potassium in our finished product resulting from a production error by a US-based premix supplier.

Two mineral premixes were affected. One premix contained excessive levels of zinc and under-supplemented potassium. The second premix under-supplemented potassium. Both zinc and potassium are essential nutrients for cats and are added as nutritional supplements to NUTRO® dry cat food.

This issue was identified during an audit of our documentation from the supplier. An extensive review confirmed that only these two premixes were affected. This recall does not affect any NUTRO® dog food products, wet dog or cat food, or dog and cat treats.

Affected product was distributed to retail customers in all 50 states, as well as to customers in Canada, Mexico, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, and Israel. We are working with all of our distributors and retail customers, in both the US and internationally, to ensure that the recalled products are not on store shelves. These products should not be sold or distributed further.

Consumers who have purchased affected product should immediately discontinue feeding the product to their cats, and switch to another product with a balanced nutritional profile. While we have received no consumer complaints related to this issue, cat owners should monitor their cat for symptoms, including a reduction in appetite or refusal of food, weight loss, vomiting or diarrhea. If your cat is experiencing health issues or is pregnant, please contact your veterinarian.

Consumers who have purchased product affected by this voluntary recall should return it to their retailer for a full refund or exchange for another NUTRO® dry cat food product. Cat owners who have more questions about the recall should call 1-800-833-5330 between the hours 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM CST

THE PET CONNECTION

By Gina Spadaforei
Pet Columnist

The Short Life of a Pet is not Measured in Time, but in Love

The patterns of one's life often are captured and defined by the all-too-short life of a very special animal.

Gina I know this all too well now. I've been spending a lot of time remembering, analyzing and, yes, crying, after losing my 10-year-old dog Lance last week, a victim of the cancer that had finally come roaring back after more than 18 months of dormancy.

Two years ago this month, a veterinarian I didn't know, then a young associate at the hospital we patronized, told me Lance wouldn't make it through the summer, if he even made it through the next few hours. He told me this over the anesthetized form of my dog, who'd gone in for a biopsy and come out with a reconstructed bladder after the young veterinarian acted on a hunch that what he wanted to do might work.

It did. Lance recovered and thrived for that summer and the next one, as the vet, now out on his own, ended each of Lance's frequent examinations with a shake of his head and an expression of amazement. It was a precious time, too good to last, and just before Christmas, a smidgen of blood in the bottom of a test tube gave us the news we'd all feared: The cancer was back.

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Why Does Pet Loss Hurt So Much?

by Martha M. Tousley, CNS-BC, FT

People I encounter in pet grief support groups are often shocked to discover how bad they feel when their pets die. Statements such as "I don't know what's wrong with me. I didn't feel this bad when my grandmother (acquaintance, friend, relative) died" are common. And so the question arises, why do so many of us feel the loss of a companion animal so intently - and is it normal to feel this way?

Pet Parrot

There is no question that companion animals are becoming more valued in our society than they were just 20 or 30 years ago. Statistics indicate that more people in the United States today have pets than children, and most pet owners regard their pets as members of the family.

How we react to the death of any family member- human or animal- depends to a large extent on the part they've played in our daily lives, the significance of our relationships with them, and the strength of our attachments to them.

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Can You Explain a Pet's Death to Another Pet?

When a pet dies, owners often ask their veterinarian whether they should show the body to their other pets. They ask this in a sincere effort to help "explain" the finality of what has occurred to the surviving pets - to let them know why their buddy won't be coming home.

Whether this is helpful is the subject of debate ... and there is little evidence to support either view. On one hand, it may be argued that pets do not have the cognitive ability to understand the finality of death. Showing them a body would be like letting a 2-year-old see a deceased family member at a funeral – the consequences just don't register. On the other hand, it can be argued that dogs and cats see death as we do, and that viewing a deceased companion does help to explain why that pet won't be around in the future.

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Saying Goodbye: Memorializing Your Canine Companion

By: Karen Commings

One meaningful way to pay tribute to your dog's memory is to donate to an animal organization in his name.

Memorials

The human-animal bond is strong, sometimes as strong as any you may have with a person. When an animal companion dies, it can be just as heartbreaking as the death of a human loved one. Unfortunately, animal lovers are often met with insensitive comments, such as, "It was only a dog," or "Just get another one" when a dog companion dies. The dog's caregiver is left to mourn in private or get emotional support from strangers who might staff pet-loss support lines.

If the person experiencing the death of a dog is a child, finding ways to validate the pain of the loss is vital to helping the youngster through the mourning process and the feelings of grief.

Special Memorial Projects

Preserving and cherishing your dog's memory will help you find emotional support in your time of loss among those who love their pets as much as you. Everyone grieves in different ways, so finding an appropriate way to memorialize your pet is an individual decision.

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Putting a Pet Down - Euthanasia Help & Guidelines

What to know when making the toughest decision

by Becky Mokkenkamp
(as shown in Prevention Magazine, All Rights Reserved)

Pancho was bloated and had been moaning for hours when her owner took her to the vet. Alison Benton knew that her 13yo Boston Terrier was gravely ill, but she was unprepared for the diagnosis of terminal congestive heart failure.

"There was kind of disbelief," she recalls. "Then I cried." Medication eased Pancho's discomfort, but she became progressively weaker until she was unable to walk to her water bowl. Finally, Benton and her husband decided they needed to end the dog's suffering, though it meant ending her life. Now, two years later, Benton says that putting Pancho down was the kindest thing they could have done.

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Am I Crazy to Feel So Sad about This?

Coping with Pet Loss: "Am I Crazy to Feel So Sad about This?"
By Marty Tousley

You've just learned that your family's beloved pet is terminally ill. The vet gives your cherished companion less than a month to live! As the sad reality of losing this important member of your family sets in, a million thoughts race through your head.
what to do when your kitten dies
Whether struggling with an animal companion's chronic illness, facing a decision about euthanasia, or mourning the loss of a cherished pet, most animal lovers are shocked and overwhelmed by the intensity of their reactions. They wonder if it is normal to feel the loss of a companion animal so deeply. Statements such as "I don't know what's wrong with me. I didn't feel this bad when my grandmother (acquaintance, friend, relative) died" are common. If this is a family's first encounter with death, parents may be uncertain how to guide their children through the experience of losing a beloved pet.

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Explaining Pet Loss to Children: Six Do’s and Don’ts

Death and dying are two of the hardest facts of life to explain to children. Very often, the death of a family pet is a child's first encounter with this immutable law of nature. How we handle this event can have a far-reaching impact on our children's understanding of death and dying.

Explaining Pet Loss to Children
Eleven-year-old Maria, for instance, was used to greeting her cat Feifel every day after school. One day, he didn't appear. Maria and her mother found Feifel under a bed, breathing weakly. The veterinarian said Feifel had heart disease. He might be able to save him, but Feifel was 14 and suffered from several other age-related problems.

His quality of life would only grow worse. The most humane course to take was euthanasia. Later, her family held a memorial service, and Maria wrote poems about him.

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Real men don't grieve, or do they

by Martha M. Tousley, CNS-BC, FT

In his runaway bestseller, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, author John Gray examines in detail what most of us intuitively already know. Men and women are very different from each other in how they think, how they feel and how they behave.

So it is with grieving. When a cherished pet is critically ill or has died, men and women will not experience or express their reactions in the same way. Failure to understand and accept our different ways of grieving can result in hurt feelings and conflict between partners and among family members during a very difficult time.

There are big decisions to be made - whether to proceed with expensive diagnostic procedures or treatments, choices about euthanasia, options for care of the pet's body after death. There are good-byes to be said and there is grief work to be done. Behaviors can be misinterpreted; needs may be misunderstood; expectations may not be met.

Male grief has certain characteristics that are important for us to know. Otherwise we may assume that, when faced with the crisis of losing a beloved companion animal, real men don't grieve.

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Coping with Pet Loss Part 1: Diagnosis & Care

Learning that your pet has a terminal illness can be devastating for a family. Working with a veterinarian you trust to confirm the diagnosis is the first step.

Coping with loss of your pet, death of pet, pet loss

Diagnosis

Veterinarian Merry Crimi urges, “Be sure your vet makes an accurate diagnosis, and not just a best guess. Laboratory tests, x-rays, ultrasounds and biopsies can confirm diagnosis of a terminal illness. Be sure you understand how your veterinarian reached his conclusion, and ask how the disease most often progresses.”

The outcome of a terminal illness is death. “Common terminal illnesses include inoperable brain cancer, end stage kidney, and heart failure – diseases where surgery or medicines cannot be effective,” says Crimi.

A second opinion

If you do not feel the spectrum of options given to you is reasonable or you don’t have a trusting relationship with the staff that has seen your pet, seek a second opinion. Another opinion may offer some options you hadn’t considered.

Pet companions may feel awkward about asking for a second opinion. Most veterinarians can appreciate that for important decisions, a companion might want another set of eyes and ears. A caring veterinarian will not make it difficult for you to get more information or consult with another professional.

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Pet Euthanasia: The Facts

A survey in the Veterinary Record listed the most common reason for cats and dogs to be put to sleep as terminal illness (51%). Old age or senility accounts for 37% of cat and dog euthanasias. Cats are twice as likely (10%) than dogs (5%) to require euthanasia because of traumatic injuries, for example, road accidents, which sadly are more common among cats. However, only 1% of cats, as opposed to 6% of dogs, are put to sleep because of behavioral problems.

(The list of a pet's basic needs below is universally recorded elsewhere but these criteria are intended only as guidelines when used as a benchmark in deciding your pet's well-being. Euthanasia may not be appropriate even if some of these criteria are not met. Each case for euthanasia should be judged on its own merits and your vet should always be consulted beforehand. As the owner you also know your pet better than anyone.)

  • Freedom from uncontrollable pain, distress and discomfort.
  • Ability to walk and balance.
  • Ability to eat and drink without pain and vomiting.
  • Freedom from painful, inoperable tumours.
  • Ability to breathe freely and without difficulty.
  • Ability to hold up head when at rest.
  • Ability to urinate and defecate without difficulty or incontinence.
  • Ability to see and hear.
  • Ability to enjoy food.
  • Pet responds to owner and family.
  • Not suffering from repeated vomiting and/or convulsions.

Pet Loss Website of the Month

Link: http://www.ashestoashes.com/


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Sponsor and friend of the site, Ashes to Ashes, a Pet Urn Company manufactures fine furniture grade wood urns, wood photograph urns, ceramics, jewelry, and other pet loss keepsakes. All urns arrive with a lifetime breakage replacement policy. When you receive your pet's cremains, simply transfer them to your choice of urn for a loving memory you'll cherish for years to come.

Pet Loss on Wikipedia

Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animal_loss

Rainbow Bridge

The loss of a pet or a non-human animal to which one has become emotionally bonded can be an intense loss, comparable with the death of a loved one. Whilst there is strong evidence that animals can feel such loss for other animals, this article focuses on human feelings, when an animal is lost, dies or otherwise is departed.

Grief over the loss of a pet is often trivialised, and people who have not experienced it themselves may add to the problem by making insensitive remarks such as "It was just a cat" or "You can always get another". A further complication is that the owner may feel guilty over having chosen to have the pet euthanised.

>Read more here

Pet Loss Website of the Month

Link: http://www.lightning-strike.com/pet-loss-websites.htm

Adirondack Stone Works
Pet Memorial Stones

Sponsor and friend of the site, Adirondack Stone Works provides custom engraved pet memorial stones at an affordable price. The tumbled Pennsylvania Bluestone they sand carve comes in a wide variety of shapes and sizes.

Adirondack Pet Memorial Stones

See more pet loss websites at Lightning-Strike.com

FUNERALS FOR PETS?

Link: http://lightning-strike.com/forum/index.php?act=ST&f=11&t=4201

FUNERALS FOR PETS?

In his delightful 1991 book, UH-OH, minister Robert Fulghum describes how he came to officiate at a memorial service for Gyda, a half German shepherd, half Dalmatian dog who lived in his houseboat "neighborhood" and who came to be loved by him and all who knew her. After Gyda dies, he describes the funeral service as a celebration of Gyda's life, during which all of her family and friends gather together on the dock and tell stories that are as much about themselves as they are about the dog. "My seminary training didn't cover how to perform a dog funeral," he observes. "It takes a real dog to teach that. And when the pupil is ready, the teacher appears."

Last month a reader of this column described to me her family's touching ceremony of remembrance following the death of their beloved dog...
>>Read all of story

PETA: Vick passes 'rigorous' be-nice-to-animals test

Link: http://lightning-strike.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=4195&st=0&#entry33119

Michael Vick has successfully passed an 8 hour 'rigorous' course on animal compassion and protection at PETA's headquarters. He still faces up to 5 years in prison for killing dogs during illegal dogfighting matches.

Read full story at CNN.com

FDA Expands Its Warning about the Risk of Botulism Poisoning From Certain Castleberry Food Products and Dog Food

Link: http://lightning-strike.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3940

A complete listing of recalls can be found in the FDA Enforcement Report at: http://www.fda.gov/opacom/Enforce.html

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 21, 2007
Consumer Inquiries:
888-INFO-FDA

FDA Expands Its Warning about the Risk of Botulism Poisoning From Certain Castleberry Food Products and Dog Food

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expanding its July 18 warning to consumers. This expansion is for consumers and pet owners regarding canned food products and dog food produced by Castleberry Food Company of Augusta, Ga., due to the risk of botulinum toxin. Castleberry is expanding the recall to include all of the following canned products with all “best by” and code dates, and FDA is warning consumers not to purchase or eat any of the canned products listed in the table below.

Hot Dog Chili Sauces
SIZE
UPC CODES

Austex Onion Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
30300-97101

Austex Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
30300-99533

Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
30300-00101

Castleberry’s Onion Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
30300-07101

Bunker Hill Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
75266-04152

Kroger Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
11110-83942

Meijer Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
41250-85862

Food Lion Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
35826-06911

Bloom Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
25439-92448

Thrifty Maid Hot Dog Chili Sauce
10 OZ
21140-21367

Natural Balance Eatables dog food varieties:

Irish Stew with Beef Dog Food
15 OZ
23633-59860

Chinese Take Out with Sauce with Vegetables and Chicken Dog Food
15 OZ
23633-59861

Southern Style Dumplings with Gravy with Chicken and Vegetables
Dog Food
15 OZ
23633-59862

Hobo Chili with Chicken Pasta Dog Food
15 OZ
23633-59863

The agency is expanding its warning based in part on FDA test results and information obtained during a joint FDA and U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection of the Castleberry’s facility in Augusta, Ga.

Exposure to botulinum toxin can be fatal and two people in Texas and two people in Indiana remain seriously ill and hospitalized with botulism poisoning associated with eating Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce.

While the previous recall and the known illnesses are linked to production dates of April 30 to May 22, 2007, the firm has extended the recall to include all products listed irrespective of “best by” date. The firm is cooperating with FDA in the recall of these products and has ceased processing and distribution.

In addition, Castleberry is recalling other products containing meat, which are regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. USDA is also warning the public not to eat certain brands of Castleberry products containing meat. The list of these USDA-regulated products can be viewed at this link to the USDA website: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/Recall_033_2007_Release/index.asp

Consumers who have any of these products or any foods made with these products should throw them away immediately. Double bag the cans in plastic bags that are tightly closed then place in a trash receptacle for non-recyclable trash outside of the home. Additional instructions for safe disposal can be found at www.cdc.gov/botulism/botulism_faq.htm

Retailers that have any of these products are asked to assure that they are removed from use and do not accidentally get reintroduced for sale, service or donation.

Symptoms of botulism poisoning in humans can begin from 6 hours to 2 weeks after eating food that contains the toxin. Symptoms may include double vision, blurred vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, and muscle weakness that moves progressively down the body, affecting the shoulders first then descending to the upper arms, lower arms, thighs, calves, etc. Botulism poisoning can also cause paralysis of the breathing muscles which can result in death unless assistance with breathing (mechanical ventilation) is provided. Individuals who show these symptoms and who may have recently eaten one of the Castleberry’s products currently under recall should seek immediate medical attention.

The disease has only been seen occasionally in dogs and has not been reported in cats. Ferrets are highly susceptible to botulinum toxin. The incubation period can be 2 hours to 2 weeks; in most cases, the symptoms appear after 12 to 24 hours. Botulism is characterized by progressive motor paralysis. Typical clinical signs may include muscle paralysis, difficulty breathing, chewing and swallowing, visual disturbances and generalized weakness may also occur. Death usually results from paralysis of the respiratory or cardiac muscles. Pet owners who have used these products and whose pets have these symptoms should contact their veterinarian immediately. At this time we are not aware of pet illnesses associated with these products although we recommend that all these products should be discarded.

Texas lab finds acetaminophen in pet food

Link: http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/s_510984.html

Texas lab finds acetaminophen in pet food
Kelly | June 5, 2007 2:09 pm

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating a Texas laboratory’s finding of acetaminophen in dog and cat food, an agency spokesman said Monday.

“We’re very interested in being able to test these samples ourselves to determine the levels of those contaminants,” said FDA spokesman Doug Arbesfeld. “What’s significant is these things are there. They don’t belong there.”

The pain medication is the fifth contaminant found in pet foods during the past 2 1/2 months and can be toxic or lethal to pets, especially cats. It is not known if any animals became sick with acetaminophen poisoning, or died from it.

“We were looking for cyanuric acid and melamine, and the acetaminophen just popped up,” Donna Coneley, lab operations manager for ExperTox Inc. in Deer Park, Texas, told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review yesterday. “It definitely was a surprise to find that in several samples.”

At least five dog and cat food samples submitted by worried pet owners and pet food manufacturers contained varying levels of the pain reliever, she said. Only the food, not individual ingredients, were tested.

The medication was found most often with cyanuric acid, a chemical used in pool chlorination, Coneley said. Varying levels of melamine, a chemical used to make plastics, also were found among the hundreds of samples ExperTox tested, she said.

The contaminants were found in foods that are not among the more than 150 brands recalled since March 16, Coneley said. The highest level of acetaminophen was found in a dog food sample submitted by a manufacturer, she said. Coneley declined to identify the company but said its officials were given the results “well over a month ago.”

Full story here: http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/s_510984.html

Note: While lab is not releasing the names of the makers, an reader reports one of his cats died and one is still very sick from acetominophen in Hill’s Science Diet Sensitive Stomach formula dry cat food confirmed by lab testing. Both cats were diagnosed with acute renal failure–but it should be noted that acetominophen is usually toxic to the liver, not the kidneys. Another reader lost a cat in January that was Pet Pride cat food, which tested positive for acetominophen and cyanuric acid.