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Aflatoxins, Melamine, and Cyanuric Acid found in US Made Pet Food

Aflatoxins, Melamine, and Cyanuric Acid found in US Made Pet Food

A Hong Kong based consumer association tested numerous brands of kibble (dry) pet foods and found 3 U.S. made pet foods to contain aflatoxins, two U.S. made pet foods contained melamine, and another U.S. made pet food contained cyanuric acid.

The Consumer Council of Hong Kong just published findings of testing performed on 39 different dry/kibble pet foods; 20 dog foods and 19 cat foods.  Their testing found “the presence of the carcinogen aflatoxin B1, and the contaminants melamine and cyanuric acid in some of the samples.”

All levels of aflatoxins found in the Consumer Council testing were below established limits of the European Union Commission, and below established limits of FDA.  However as the Hong Kong consumer group pointed out low levels of aflatoxins over time remain a serious risk to pets.  Veterinarians they consulted stated “since aflatoxin B1 is a known carcinogen, it should best be avoided; long-term exposure to aflatoxin B1 could increase the risk of liver impairment, tumors in liver, and suppressed immune system.”

The U.S. manufactured pet foods the Consumer Council found to contain aflatoxin B1 are:

  • Purina One Smart Blend Chicken & Rice Formula Adult Dog Food
  • Hill’s Science Diet Adult Optimal Care Cat Food
  • AvoDerm Natural Chicken & Herring Meal Formula Adult Cat Food

Purina told the South China Morning Post the carcinogen was an “unavoidable natural contaminant” found in grains such as corn, barley and rice.  AvoDerm, stated “it had since replaced the corn in its formula that was believed to be the source of the carcinogen.” 

And then the bad news continues.  The Consumer Council reported their testing found melamine in:

  • Solid Gold Adult Dog Food
  • Iams Chicken Cat Food

And cyanuric acid was found in:

  • Purina Pro Plan Salmon Cat Food

Melamine and cyanuric acid were found to be the deadly cause of the largest pet food recall in history in 2007.

A single comment posted on the South China Morning Post article stated…

“What else would you expect? especially from USA, a nation where the average resident consumes tons of adulterated meat and other unhealthy foods. Their meat is full of growth enhancing chemicals and drugs.
In Las Vegas for instance, the food slops left over at casino breakfast buffets is cooked into a thick soup and fed to the pigs being raised on nearby farms. The same recycled food is then supplied as bacon or pork fillet to the casinos from whence it was collected as waste a few months earlier.
American pet food producers will probably blame being caught out on China. Everything wrong in the world these days is China’s or Russia’s fault.”

And I have to say – this comment has some valid points.

The food/feed that is allowed to be fed to our animals (pets and livestock) in the U.S. is unforgivable.  Poultry litter (yes, poultry poop) is an allowed ingredient in cattle feed.  Almost any type of food waste – contaminated with anything from pesticides to rodent filth – is welcome to be included into all pet foods and animal feeds in the U.S.  While China certainly must own their responsibility of melamine laced vegetable proteins pet food ingredients and illegal drug residues in jerky treats – here in the U.S. our animal food/feed system is a horrendous mess.

I’ve been told by regulatory authorities at both a state and federal level that their budget is often the challenge – specifically lacking a budget to do any type of proper testing for pet food contaminants.  State governments provide very little funding to their pet food regulatory divisions, and the FDA is financially strapped by Congress.

But here we (consumers) are…trying our best to safely feed our pets (and ourselves).  We just paid our taxes – which becomes the salaries of those regulatory authorities.  Aren’t we due some regulatory protection with our pet foods and treats?  I’m not sure what the fix is.  But low levels of aflatoxins and melamine/cyanuric acid found in pet foods is not it.  Instead, it is history repeating itself…again and again and again.  How sick do our pets and us have to become until someone of authority realizes that the food system needs a major overhaul?

To learn more about the dangers of aflatoxins/mycotoxins – even at low levels – in pet food, Click Here to read a very interesting paper published on this topic.

To learn more about the dangers of melamine and cyanuric acid, talk to one of the thousands of pet food consumers who watched their pets die in 2007.

 

Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,

Susan Thixton
Pet Food Safety Advocate
Author Buyer Beware, Co-Author Dinner PAWsible
TruthaboutPetFood.com
Association for Truth in Pet Food

What’s in Your Pet’s Food?
Is your dog or cat eating risk ingredients?  Chinese imports?  Petsumer Report tells the ‘rest of the story’ on over 2500 cat foods, dog foods,  and pet treats.  30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee. www.PetsumerReport.com

 

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58 comments

  1. Thank you for this, Susan.
    So to be clear: only kibble tested positive for these contaminants?
    Is one to assume that canned food by the same manufacturers would not contain aflatoxin, cyanuric acid or melamine, or is this a possibility?

    • Yes – the Consumer group stated only kibble was tested. But there is no way to know if canned foods would contain the same toxins until they are tested.

  2. Hmmm…made in the USA but I wonder where some of the ingredients are sourced. Could it be that they come from outside of the US? Do you think Solid Gold, Iams, or Purina would give us an honest answer (or any answer) on that?

  3. How come the “unavoidable” aflatoxin was not found in all tested products?

    Or did they mean: just unavoidable for Purina?

    Interesting to see that Purina managed to make the list twice.

  4. Even more reasons NOT to buy pets foods containing grains, which are indigestible for dogs and cats anyway :-(
    As consumers, we need to spread the truth, and don’t trust kibble. I hate even feeding the few I consider to be “acceptable” to my animals. I am replacing cancerous kibble with human food as I go along: pumpkin, string beans, carrots and organic meats. I just don’t trust any of the mainstream animal food manufacturers, and I am sadly leery of the 3 I still buy…

  5. The food industry in this country is a disgraceful mess. The majority of our foods are now farmed buy the huge corporations that bought out all the family farms that once produced the nation’s crops.
    When a company that is owned by stock holders produces anything the main goal is always profit and not quality.
    Our produce is now genetically changed to produce a plant resistant to insects and disease as well as uniform in size. They no longer rotate crops because chemical fertilizer is used instead. All this means reduced nutrition and flavor plus exposure to harmful chemicals from fertilizers and insecticide.
    Animals used for food are cruelly treated from birth to slaughter while along the way being injected with antibiotics, steroids, and hormones which remain in the meats consumers are buying.
    Why would it surprise anyone that harmful fillers would be put in pet food? Read the ingredient list on any boxed or bagged human food! See if you can read, much less identify all those ingredients! Do you really think the FDA is looking out for you? Cancer is at epidemic proportions in this country but not in nations where they live off the land naturally!
    The good news is that most areas still have some small all natural privately owned farms and there are good co-opps and farmers markets where you can buy these items at reasonable prices. It takes a little online searching but there are websites that cater to people interested in shopping at these places.
    You can eat healthy and feed you animals healthy as well. It does mean changing your habits a bit but really…..is it quality you want or convenience? I know we want both but health and quality will save both you and your pet from a lot of suffering in the end.
    I know of no other way to be sure of what is actually in the food you and your pet eat.

  6. I don’t understand. If a Hong Kong based consumer association group did this testing on U.S. made pet foods, then why wouldn’t a United States consumer association be interested in testing our own Pet Food?

    • I wish our Association could – the issue is the cost. We just don’t have the $ for such testing.

      • catherine haedrich

        the government has money to pay for the first family to take a multi million dollar spring break to China. and the government has the money to send 9 planes, 45 vehicles and 900 with the president to the Hague for a conference.
        and billions to foreign aid. ugh.

      • Susan, how much money would you need to complete the testing?

        • Mollie and I estimated at least $10,000.00 is needed to do a fair test – but that is going to depend on what we test for.

          • Crowd fund it. I’ll bet that there are at least 10K people out there willing to chip in a dollar to test pet foods.

      • How do we know what this Hong Kong group reported is true and not skewed due to their own political agenda and how they feel about the U.S? Although, I don’t doubt for a second there is crap in our pet and human food. We really need an unbiased testing lab to scrutinize our foods!

        • Good luck finding one (unbiased, that is).

        • we have seen hundreds of dogs die on our dog-food education/information board, Dr. Ferris. Some young dogs die after one bowl of this garbage. I invite you to join our group, and all the rest of you are invited too: Facebook/ Is Beneful by Purina Killing or Sickening Dogs? (obviously yes. we see this over and over again).

          I also invite you to visit our page maintained by one of our members in memory of dogs who have died after eating Beneful. It’s called Beneful Angels – The Faces Behind the Statistics. We have over 100 angels on that page, and Lord only knows how many more there are.

          I would support an unbiased testing lab, but where would you suggest that be done? Dr. Ferris, 100% of the 2013 corn crop was contaminated with aflatoxin. 100%. China turned away $500 million of US corn yesterday. also, it’s genetically modified and sprayed with Round-Up, which has now been found in breast milk. You try and you try to do the best you can, and this is what you get.

          again, I invite you to visit our page and peruse our archives. we are a closed group but I’ll pass the word to the other administrators to let you right in, and anyone else who wants to join is welcome.

          I don’t think this data is skewed. I think Beneful and Purina are screwed. We want to see a recall of this death in a bag.

          thank you for reading this.
          mh

  7. This is horrifying ! Excuse my ignorance but how is melamine lacing vegetable proteins? and why are carcinogens found in grains such as corn, barley and rice?

    Thank you
    Erica

    • In 2007, melamine was added to vegetable protein ingredients (example wheat gluten) to up the protein content. Melamine analyzed as protein – thus when added to say a low protein wheat gluten – the gluten analyzed as a higher protein and in turn was able to be sold for a higher price.

      With grains – molds known as mycotoxins are very prone to corn, wheat, and numerous other grains. Over the past two growing seasons in the US – mycotoxins levels have been very high. The pet food industry is allowed to use ingredients contain 20 parts per billion aflatoxins as the FDA believes this is a non-toxic level. But what the FDA does not give consideration to is the day in day out consumption of low levels of aflatoxins pets are consuming. Science proves it is dangerous.

    • The kibble contaminated with melamine and cyanuric acid must have used Chinese ingredients. (Interesting that Purina has managed to have both toxins but has — thusfar — kept them separated.) The aflatoxin can come from various sources, but the commonality is that the source is mouldy. So Purina is quite correct when it says aflatoxin is unavoidable if it routinely sources questionable grain products, whether domestic or imported.

      Ellie is absolutely right about the US food industry. I would not have believed it were it not for what Susan’s been telling us about the FDA regarding pets. Pets or humans, a buck is a buck. Just like with pet food, our own junk food is calculated to be irresistible. The reason the stuff in pet food is so very, very bad, is that we’re already eating so much awful “food,” that that’s what’s left over. If they could get away with putting feather meal in hot dogs, they would.

  8. Dogs and cats (even more so) are carnivores and should be fed meat, not grain, not veggies. Although veggies won’t hurt them as grain possible can, they cannot digest veggies and that’s why they come out they same way they went it; therefore no nutritional value, don’t waste your money.
    Feed raw meat and bones or cooked meat if you prefer. If you are like most of us you can’t afford organic meat. I have four dogs, who eat four pounds of food per day. I belong to a Co-op of raw meat feeders who feed ONLY grass-fed beef, lamb, pork, llama, yak, etc. I feed only organic chicken and turkey, which can be found at a reasonable price from a processor here in town. Do your homework and find good sources. You’ll find this can be cheaper than the ‘designer” pet foods that are grain-free, etc. that you pay a lot for and much healthier.

  9. Susan, do you have an approximate cost and a lab for testing food?

    I am beyond livid that we’re talking aflatoxins and melamine!!

    While I do agree that profit is motive I also think that constant take overs of small and medium size pet food producers is also a control issue for the PFI. If they are the sole producers then we the consumer are left with no choice……..of course that is yet another reason for us to continue to protect and patronize the smaller companies.

    • I wouldn’t want to say the lab publicly here – this website is monitored by all of Big Pet Food – disclosing the lab we use could put our results in jeopardy (honest results that is). But we have worked with several labs for small things in the past. Costs would be at least $40 per test per food. So we are looking at (easily) $150 per food (though this is just off the top of my head – only way to know for sure is to determine exactly what we would test for, how many foods we would test and get an estimate from the labs). Mollie and I have talked about this many times – to really do this right – and fair (testing a broad range of pet foods) we would need to raise at least $10,000.00. Another serious issue is species DNA testing. Me personally – I would love to do DNA testing on pet foods for 1) to assure the meat protein listed on the label is actually in the food (such as lamb in a lamb food) and 2) to test for dog and cat DNA in pet foods. This DNA testing raises the price dramatically. Perhaps if enough pet owners feel they could donate – and we could raise that much money – I would be more than willing to take this on (supervising and arranging the testing). So if everyone could post comments on this thought – we’ll go from there.

      • Cheryl Mallon-Bond

        I would like to comment on Susan Thixton’s comments posted on April 16, 2014. There needs to be wealthy pet advocate benefactors to help defer costs for all these testing expenses. May I suggest contacting Betty White, Bob Barker Foundation & the like. Regular co sumers can also con tribute, but large volumes of cash flow need to come from more wealthy contributors for sure!!!!

        • Celebrity involvement has been discussed before. These two note-worthy names are heavily involved in Pet Rescue. Some Rescues are supported by big name PF companies. Celebrities are also a “trade.” Meaning their livelihood depends upon by hired by corporations & businesses. Which may have PF company subsidiaries. They are also visible personalities and want to remain popular with public.

          This is why fund-raising on behalf of the TAPF is so challenging. We speak the truth, obviously the media doesn’t seem interested in it. Unless, and until, evidence can’t be ignored.

          It’s why this cause is SO important! For the consumer’s peace of mind and the safety of our pets!

  10. This the same toxin that is, or can be, found in the corn kitty litter right?

  11. I’m curious if the Consumer Council of Hong Kong was questioned about it’s political agenda. We here in the US have been very vociferous about our dislike of Chinese ingredients and now that the Chinese economy is softening, I wonder if this is an attempt to call US made food into question. In my opinion this is merely tit-for-tat on the part of the Chinese.

    As another person on this thread pointed out, the ingredients may have come from non-US sources, which of course the Council made no attempt to ascertain. I would be surprised if Purina *wasn’t* buying imported grain. Which while calling US manufacturing QC into question, still implicates Asian sources as being sub-par.

    I wouldn’t raise this question if the Council had simultaneously tested pet food made in Asia. Not doing so looks like they wanted/needed to find problems in other countries’ food thereby making the “Made in the US” labels look questionable if not down right hypocritical, as implied in the newspaper quote.

    I’m not suggesting that there aren’t problems with US pet food, only that this research shouldn’t be taken at face value. Remember, it was Chinese ingredient brokers who *knowingly* added melamine so that they could sell low quality ingredients for top dollar.

    Solid Gold fell from grace many years ago, why would anyone be surprised at Purina’s legally correct response and Iams, well….Maybe Mars PetCare will do a marginally better job going forward.

    Just an aside to that news quote. I admit I’m baffled at the objection to feeding food scrap “slops” to hogs – it’s been done for centuries. Hogs are not vegetarians, they are omnivores, so feeding meat scraps from a buffet shouldn’t be a problem, either.

  12. Maybe a kickstarter page to raise the money for the testing? I would contribute a small amount despite that I’m feeling very poor today :) It might take a while to raise the needed funds, (or an angel may see the program and step in right away) but it would also in the interim put the pet food industry on notice that testing is imminent and maybe they would fix some stuff proactively, thereby helping some pets in the meantime ?? I see a kickstarter project for comprehensive pet food testing to be a win/win even if it takes a while to raise the funds…..

  13. so is anyone tracking down the sourcing? If not, I might pursue that. And does anyone know what Avoderm is using as a replacement for the problematic ingredient?

    Oh the irony of China pointing fingers at us! I’m going out on a limb here to say the ingredients came from there. Not excusing the US manufacturers, who should never be producing dangerous food. But gotta love the twist.

    Susan, contact me about Animal Nature donating to a testing fund.

  14. Those foods may be “US-made” but they may still be (and especially the big companies probably are) getting their raw materials from China. Seems like there’s plenty of blame to go around, and the writer has carefully phrased the accusations to try to keep it off China. As Ed Schultz would say, “Keep on pretending!”

    • Yes, that is a valid point to make.

      The reason that aflatoxins are “unavoidable” in the grain-based kibbles these companies are making is because the grains they use are the lowest valued grains, suitable for no other purpose than pet foods: part of “least cost mix” protocols. The grains sit in the silos for ages… a natural environment for moisture, and molds to form. When the molds attract insects that feed on them (“storage mites”) the molds protect themselves by secreting toxins (aflatoxins). Yes, long term consumption of these toxins– even at low levels– should surely be considered dangerous. But that wouldn’t be “unavoidable” if these companies weren’t using junk ingredients.

  15. So true, Dr. Hofve. Whoever is supplying the offending ingredient is really the one to blame. I do wish, however, that US made pet foods would take more responsibility and care to source ingredients from safe, reputable suppliers. They try to hook consumers by plastering “made in the USA” all over their packaging, but every single ingredient could come from other countries.

  16. Susan,
    I will donate $2,500 towards such testing.

    Come on, folks…rise up, step up & fight for the animals!

    Jo

    • Oh my! Ok…that’s enough of encouragement for me. I think it would be best for everyone to give input on what should be test for – what is everyone’s preference and then I can speak to some labs and get some estimates of what the cost will be. Then set up the kickstarter program to raise the money. Thank you so much!

    • I just need an address of where to send a check and I’ll join Jo with a matching $2500.

      • I will do some homework on this over the next couple of days – we will do this. Give me a couple of days to speak with labs – and trusted experts (on what to test for) – and I’ll post on what our next move can be. I cannot say thank you enough to everyone!

  17. Although Hong Kong is now part of China I think they still consider themselves somewhat apart and distinct and would not necessarily be serving as a shill for the greater Chinese manufacturing community. It would be nice to have the full list of who/what they tested…. Susan do you have a direct link to the story in English?

    Even if you somehow got all the needed money today, I still think a Kickstarter is a great idea…. maybe with a budget for follow up testing over the following year? Or a statement that funds raised in excess of the specified amount will go to extend the testing program into the future? Those kickstarter projects can have some great legs in social media if they get picked up by the right outlets and shared enough on Facebook, etc. so it could have 3 benefits: actually raising money for the testing, putting the industry on notice that testing will be happening, AND educating the public to your organization and mission.

  18. Susan, set up a banking account for lab testing funds and publish the address. I’m certain many pet owners are willing to donate money if this will convince the pet food manufacturers we demand the truth and will hold them accountable.

  19. I have one word for ya’ll. VICTOR. Made in Mt. Pleasant, Texas. Good food with no surprises.

  20. This news is making me feel really sick! I had just discussed with my husband a worthy cause to donate to. And as a couple we do disagree with the abuse and testing some companies do on animals. I got a good one to donate to the other day in the mail called Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine. And we decided to donate to that. But hadn’t yet. And now this. I will have to see if he will donate with me in this one. It is more personal especially since he has been feeding the Purina type mentioned to both his Saint Benard and the Wolf Chow we keep. We have to keep with feeding them like we always have mostly what we eat. The scarriest thing is, what we eat isn’t all that pure either. We see organic. And it’s supposed to be all good. Isn’t cross pollination making organic not all that clean?As far as GMO at least. I think so. And the water we drink has a lot of bad things in it. But it’s ours and we drink it anyway. It can be overwhelming to think of all the possibilities! Please Susan keep me posted I want to donate to this one. If you will get the ball rolling on it. OK?

  21. thank God we’re not on the list

  22. How much more does the DNA testing add? I’d be more interested in the cat/dog DNA presence than looking for whether lamb is lamb, for example, but knowing in general what meats are actually in there would be helpful.

  23. Can you refer me to recipes for homemade dog food that fully cover their needs? I have a Maltese (if breed makes a difference). I no longer buy treats for her; instead, I make them myself. Thank you.

  24. HIlls posted this response on their Facebook page – what do people think?

    We want to provide clarification to the report by the Hong Kong Consumer Council. The test performed by Eurofins detected 1.3 parts per billion of Aflatoxin B1. The minimum threshold to even detect Aflatoxin is 1.0 parts per billion. What’s really important to know is that the FDA specific guidelines on acceptable levels of Aflatoxin in pet food AND human food is 20 parts per billion. What this means is that the level of Aflatoxin B1 detected is 15 times lower than what is acceptable. The fact is Aflatoxins are considered unavoidable in human and pet food as they are naturally occurring. Most importantly, we want to assure you that we test our ingredients as part of our good manufacturing practices to ensure they are safe and free of hazardous levels of mycotoxins, such as Aflatoxin. The type of testing for mycotoxins is an industry standard test that is used in the human food industry. If any ingredient does not meet the government established limit for mycotoxins, we reject it and do NOT use it.

    • I think Peter addressed this point well:

      “The reason that aflatoxins are ‘unavoidable’ in the grain-based kibbles these companies are making is because the grains they use are the lowest valued grains, suitable for no other purpose than pet foods: part of “least cost mix” protocols. The grains sit in the silos for ages… a natural environment for moisture, and molds to form. When the molds attract insects that feed on them (‘storage mites’) the molds protect themselves by secreting toxins (aflatoxins). Yes, long term consumption of these toxins– even at low levels– should surely be considered dangerous. But that wouldn’t be ‘unavoidable’ if these companies weren’t using junk ingredients.”
      ______________

      Not only are pets consuming the same PF long term, they are eating it 24/7 – 365 days a year. Like a pesticide developed to protect your Rose bushes, or kill weeds, an exposure to it here and there you’ll survive. But you wouldn’t want to be using that chemical regularly no matter how safe the company claims. You wouldn’t want to expose your pets or your children.

      Although the HK Consumers Assn. study found aflatoxins at just above the acceptable minimum, remember that was only a sample of a particular product. We have no idea the range or the scope of the testing. More questionable is the best practices of the PFI. For example: exactly how DOES a company screen to make sure the grain shipment is at the lowest level? Is the company assured before it’s even shipped? Does each company test it upon receipt? Does it ever cross their minds to reject / return a shipment? Or is a company in contract to accept the “good” with the “bad” to keep costs lower? Whereas companies, procuring for human retail sales, no doubt wants more assurances, and is willing to pay a higher cost.

      We can expect Hills to massage the finding. It’s what Science and Hills does best. They are a massive publicity controlled enterprise. And while their prescription food research does contribute to the treatment of specialized illnesses, which for some pets may be their only solution – the mass recommendation of their food for perfectly healthy pets certainly serves their own bottom line, rather than the best interests of a healthy pet. So they must protect sales at all costs. Which no doubt helps fund the research side of the business.

      I certainly don’t think Hill’s “spin” should discourage our campaign for testing results. Which would be a “win-win” proposition. Brands, if proven safe(er) would put consumers at ease. While testing may discover other skeletons in the closet. I doubt the PFI would’ve ever guessed the average consumer’s interest in “validating” their products!!!

      Let’s put them on notice!

  25. I have a lab/shepherd mix who is again getting sick and not eating Purina One, a brand new bag, and I’ve used this food since it debuted. Every since the new formula replaced the plain Kimble’s we’ve used for so long, two of our dogs have had problems, not with each bag, but enough I’ve noticed it. I don’t think plain rice and chicken is a decent diet. Can anyone advise of a US made produce that is safe or advise of a homemade food besides string beans, rice and chicken. This is getting to be a desperate situation for us, and we have three very old dogs. We quit IAMS about 3-4 yrs ago, as two dogs got sick and died after eating it, one week apart.

    • Not sure what part of the country you are from, but if from the midwest then you’re in luck! Check out Mulligan’s Stew’s website and try (chicken, lamb or fish) diets. This kibble is baked, not extruded (i.e., a mush cooked at high temperatures). This is all they do, dog food, and they seem to be doing it right. They have returned the Pledge, and the sales director always answers the phone because she loves to answer questions! I live on the west coast, but as a backup kibble, they ship it. Only takes 2 days!! You can become a member, which nearly cancels out the the shipping cost. This is a highly nutrient food, so less goes a longer way. However if this brand is too expensive you don’t have to use it every single day. Find another compatible brand that feeds larger dogs more economically. Fromms’s line has several price points. Other Readers with large breed dogs must have plenty of suggestions and great ideas, especially depending upon where you live.

      Normally, it would be EXCELLENT to give your dogs raw food too (not on the days you feed kibble) but not sure the dogs’ ages. Or if they have any health or bad teeth issues. You can also bake some pure cuts of meat (like beef chunks @ $3.99 lb.), mix it with some THK pre-mix (for healthy vitamins & minerals), cooked (Red Mills) oat bran and/or brown rice farina and/or old fashioned cooked oats (to extend the mix and binder), canned pumpkin, 100% plain greek yogurt (26 grams protein) and canned fish, and/or cooked eggs. For large dogs, it may not be affordable to prepare whole foods home-made or use THK all the time. But it’s fine to alternate between all the meals mentioned above on different days. That way they’re getting a wide range of really healthy nutrition. Be sure to test these types of meals to make sure they can easily transition.

      (Please quit Purina, P&G, Mars and cheapest house brands based on corn and soy, by-products, sugars, and unidentifiable fillers, chemical additives, colorings) especially as your dogs age. The first five ingredients should be whole, pure and identifiable. If you can’t understand the ingredient label on the package, then it’s not doing the dogs any good either. TAPF explains many weird ingredients. As you’ve already determined it’s particularly important to avoid making older dogs susceptible to chronic conditions).

    • My older dog also refused to eat Purina One some years ago. I took her to the vet who advised not to feed her anything else or she would get spoiled and become a “picky eater.” The vet said the dog would eat it when she got hungry. Another friend told me “you need a different vet.” Luckily I started doing some research on pet food online and found Susan’s TAPF site and realized my dog was being really smart to refuse to eat Purina One !

      Susan has a great cookbook you can buy called “Dinner Pawsible” if you want to home cook for your pet. She also offers “The List” which is a list of pet foods she has researched and she would feed her own pets if she was buying a commercial food. You can get “The List” with any donation amount of your choice.

      The reality is that quality kibbles are going to be almost as expensive as home cooking, but they are more convenient. Commercial fresh food is going to be way more expensive than home cooking. There is always a risk with commercial foods. I choose to prepare home cooked foods for my dogs when I am home. When I am away from home and someone else is looking after my dogs who cannot do the cooking, I would recommend Honest Kitchen dehydrated food, Fromm, or Natural Balance out of Canada. I have bought all 3 from Amazon, using my Amazon Prime service on Amazon and get free shipping.

      Bottom Line: listen to your dog and trust their instincts

  26. It’s largely the fault of US companies who choose to have their products manufactured in China because it’s cheaper. It’s all about profit, even at the expense of life, whether human or animal. And we have a complacent FDA who does nothing to protect us.
    I feel so sad for you whose animals have died from the deadly products found in pet food products. But we are all being sickened and will eventually feel the effects, perhaps deadly, of these poisons.

    What can we do to stop this horror?

    • “What can we do to stop this horror?”

      I refer you to the next article “The Pet Food Test” at this link – http://truthaboutpetfood.com/the-pet-food-test

      The message is no longer about what … can….we do (as in a question) but what we ARE doing (as in taking action). The result is the accumulation of donations in excess of $10,000 in less than 10 days from ordinary consumers who want PF tested for contaminants and ideally DNA species residue. Finally the public is looking for its own answers, fed up with the FDA’s excuses and delays. The CJT debacle demonstrates how the FDA isn’t concerned with absolute safety, only the perception of it.

      PF testing is a win-win situation for everyone! They will learn which brands are what they claim, and which ones are not. At last consumers can make choices based on information, not just marketing ploys and misleading ingredients. This is a very empowering opportunity, so please help share the message on social media!

    • Have you noticed how one event somewhere in the country gets picked up by the news services and turns into a big story while the same thing may have happened in another part of the country but went unnoticed?
      Our media is very controlled by various “powers that be.” The pet food industry in particular and the food industry in general have invested billions of dollars in advertizing on the same media outlets that give you your news.
      If the truth were ever exposed across the nation about what is being done to our food by the industry it would be a huge story that would not go away, congressional hearings, the whole ball of wax, BUT it won’t happen because of the influence that the pet food and human food industry has on media…..that influence being money!
      How do we stop it? Consumer awareness is the most important part but it is appalling how totally clueless most consumers are about what they are eating much less feeding their pet. I cringe every time I see a bag of that poison in a shopping cart.
      Even if you think you are eating healthy you can bet the genetically engineered fruits and vegetables you consume are lacking greatly in the nutrition they once carried. With most of our meats being tainted with hormones, steroids, and antibiotics we can only seek out farms that have managed to survive the widespread buy up of small farms by industrial manufacturers.
      My family eats fresh foods purchased from local small farms and the pets eat much the same. I do buy some raw dog food from a much trusted small pet food company but I know I can also feed the pets much of what we eat when prepared properly.
      How do we convince the average consumer that both people and pets are being poisoned by the food industry? I have seen many change their eating habits when a loved one comes down with cancer or heart disease or one of the many other food induced diseases that are epidemic in this country, but there are plenty that just go on as they always have and unless there is a greater awareness of this criminal activity noting will change.

  27. I am highly suspicious of this because earlier this week I saw an article which stated tht Petco and Petsmart will be removing treats which are imported from China soon. I think it’s highly convenient that this article came about since there has been a lot of upset about the safety of petfood/treats made in China. If it’s not true however I suspect a lawsuit…

  28. Just to reply to previous comments regarding any “political agendas” for a Chinese association to point fingers at US companies: as a dog owner based in Hong Kong, I can confirm that The pet food market is dominated by major players ie Purina, Hill’s, Iams etc. Walk into any pet shop and you will find imports from US/EU/Japan purely because a) Hong Kong is a city reliant on imports due to its limited capacity to produce enough for its population; and b) no Chinese pet food brand has succeeded in penetrating the market (no need to explain the reason). For those unfamiliar with Hong Kong’s relationship with China, we are culturally/politically/legislatively different as a former British colony still struggling to “assimilate” into mainland China. So to answer any concern as to why a Hong Kong association would bother testing US brands and any conspiracies involved– the way I see it is that the association is serving Hong Kong’s own interests, consider that our own pets eat the stuff, it seems pretty natural to sample on whatever that’s on the market don’t you think?
    Unfortunate that this piece of news had been misinterpreted.

    • Thank you Anna for your comment. I respect and appreciate what the Hong Kong consumer group did. And thanks to their effort, we are testing pet foods here.

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