Attitude – manner, disposition, feeling, position with regard to a person or thing. Pet food attitude – manner, disposition, feeling, position with regard to the foods our pets lives depend on. The following are two eye opening examples of pet food attitude recently shared with TAPF.
Long before I became the Caped Crusader for Safe Pet Food, I owned and operated a dog boarding and training facility. I was adding a kennel expansion and had hired what I felt to be a qualified contractor. About half way into the job, the ‘qualified’ contractor came to me with a sad story of needing money – he asked for the full payment of the job before it was completed. Being young and inexperienced (ok…stupid), I paid this person for the full job. It turned out, that was the last day I saw this contractor; he walked, with my money and never completed the job.
This life lesson ended up costing me double to finish the new kennel section. Hurt over being taken advantage of, I went to my Dad. The advice he gave, didn’t set well with me at the time, but has since become valuable information. He said “well, you haven’t learned who to do business with…but you are learning who Not to do business with.”
My ‘trusted’ contractor’s attitude was money was more important than his customer. I believe the same is true with many pet food manufacturers. They should have an attitude of HUGE appreciation and concern of their business, products and customers. But, instead, some have the same attitude as my contractor – money is more important than anything.
The following are true and recent examples of pet food attitude shared with TAPF.
A pet owner – with a sick cat – called the Taste of the Wild (Diamond) recall hotline last week. This pet owner was concerned that her cat’s illness was related to the pet food; her initial inquiry of the TOTW recall hotline representative was if her cat food bag was included in the recall. After providing the lot numbers, ‘No, the product codes and best by dates on your food were not included in the recall.’
The pet owner asked where (which plant) this food was made. The TOTW representative stated ‘I can’t tell you where the food was manufactured at.’ Perplexed, the pet owner said ‘what do you mean, isn’t that what the code is for?’ No response from the TOTW representative.
The TOTW representative told this pet owner the (salmonella) contamination started in MO ‘and then was transferred to SC via food product from one plant to the other.’ (No, this is not correct information. The FDA states the recalls from the SC plant were Salmonella Infantis; the recall from the MO plant was Salmonella Liverpool.)
Example #2 (the worst attitude I’ve ever heard – you can’t make this stuff up)
A independent pet store owner sent me a message recently, mostly sharing her frustration of lack of accountability of the pet food industry. And then she shared…
While at a pet food trade event, she was speaking with a pet food distributor. “I was giving him a hard time about the other foods they carry as he bragged about profits. I asked him how he sleeps at night? He said “Dead dogs are good for business. People buy new dogs, crates, bowls, toys, you name it. It’s good for me!”
In example #1, the TOTW representative did nothing to ease the concerns of the pet owner. Plus, they provided incorrect information. It is the responsibility of the company to properly train all staff. To me, it should be their attitude to never allow an improperly trained employee to speak with a customer. It makes me wonder how well the rest of the staff is trained; would you want someone in pet food production to be as ill informed as this customer service rep?
In example #2, well personally I hope this man…let me just say I don’t wish him well. This statement was important to share, because I believe many in this industry have similar attitudes. Some (perhaps many) have the attitude that profits are more important that the health of our pets. They might talk a good talk (or a good television commercial), but their attitude becomes clear when you learn a bit more.
I encourage everyone to ‘listen’ to the attitude of their pet food manufacturer. Do they answer your questions promptly and completely? Do they appreciate and show concern for you as a customer or potential customer? If they don’t…think of the man in example #2. And think of my Dad’s advice. You haven’t learned who to buy pet food from yet, but you are learning who not to buy pet food from.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
What’s in Your Pet’s Food?
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