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Toxic Ignored

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  1. Angela

    I used to use a grain based cat litter until one cat became ill and started to lose weight. The blood tests showed elevated liver enzymes. Additional tests were non-conclusive and the Vet didn’t believe fungus and mold could be responsible. We all know what happens when mold/fungus gets wet? He said there is no method to test for aflatoxins other than doing a liver biopsy. Even though the Vet did not see a correlation between my grain litter and liver failure, we switched it to pine and monitor his liver enzymes every quarter. Our cat is showing some improvement but he will probably never fully recover, nor will we know the cause.

    What’s disturbing about mycotoxins is their ability to remain toxic even after cooking, freezing and exposure to ultraviolet light. The methods used to remove them from grain can involve chemical binding agents. Can we assume processes are regulated and meet some level of criteria before it hits the food chain? Where are the risk assessments?

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      I would assume the processes to remove any mycotoxin is regulated – but…I doubt it is enforced. And as to the risk to methods to remove mycotoxins – I don’t know. I haven’t researched that. Sorry. I know from speaking to many insiders in pet food that mycotoxin contaminated grains – which should be rejected for use in pet food – are often used because the company needs to keep the plant/the manufacturing line operating. I’ve never been told of any efforts to clean the grains. From what I’ve been told, the major concern is to keep making pet food – no matter the condition of the ingredients.

  2. Pacific Sun

    Granted. We’re all learning. We’re doing that together. It takes one article after the next to connect all the dots about PF. But it still amazes me that there are 100 comments discussing the FDA, the finer nuances of Purina, and the “possibility” of one certain brand (or maybe others) causing pet illnesses. Sometimes the demise of these pets comes very suddenly. It’s shocking and so very sad.

    I have never read about mycotoxins or aflatoxins (et.al.) discussed anywhere else in a PF Forum setting, and yet here on TAPF we are so fortunate to be informed about these dangers. Not only about an individual instance of a toxin but now the problem of these toxins in a compounding situation (the negative synergestic effect of them)! Here we have a real explanation for long term damage being done to animals. And yet the discussion continues about the relative safety of one brand over another. I think the most enlightening post came from an insider who described how money drives the purchasing of which quality ingredients and why. Now we understand why sub-quality grain is being used!

    I am just as guilty of trying to wade through the commercial PF dilemna as well, trying to eek out maybe a better brand than all the rest. Sometimes I just want to throw the kibble in a dish and be done with it! I am so sick of worrying. But, my pets depend upon me. And if they got sick, on a chronic basis, that feeling would be so much worse! There should be more commentary on articles like this one, more sharing, more explaining to other people WHY pet food has all these risks. We are so fortunate to be given the explanations behind our warnings. It’s becomming a little easier to explain our concerns, to fight the idea of just being PF alarmists! So much appreciation goes to Susan Thixton for doing all this research and giving us more tools to fight the PF Industry. And to keep encouraging one another, to be doing the right thing. Thank you Susan.

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