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Two Varieties of Party Animal Pet Food tests positive for Pentobarbital

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  1. Hannie

    Sure wish we could get a list of what is manufactured at Evanger’s…….those are foods you may want to stay away from. I’m sure that any pet food that is made/packed there will not admit it. This is just awful…….let’s hope it doesn’t go beyond this food altho my gut feeling is that anything that has gone thru their plant may have issues…….

    1. Susan

      I’m so disappointed about this, I stopped Evander and started Cocolicious, I’m angry over this.

      1. Sherrie Ashenbremer

        I have a dog with allergies, he chews and licks and turns red when he has beef or chicken, he is very hard to feed.

      2. Bb

        I have been feeding it for about a year. So what do we feed now?

        1. Terri Christenson Jansoj

          homemade is what I make and feed

        2. Rhonda Gillespie Floyd

          I home cook for mine. Check out Dr. Morgan, DVM. YouTube has some of her videos. My friend uses her as her vet. She adds one cup of Dr. Harvey’s veg to bowl to 2 1/2 pounds of meat.
          They also get eggs and fresh and frozen organic veggies for treats.

      3. Kim Dexter

        I’m angry as well ~~ my Pyrenees is one smart girl!! She wouldn’t eat the second batch I ordered!! Thankfully I just threw it away figuring she knew something I didnt!! 😡😡

        1. Judy G.

          Mine hasn’t wanted to eat it lately either… that’s it. I’m going home cooked!

      4. BB

        My dogs love cocolicious and I thought I was getting a high quality canned food. I don’t know what other canned I can buy. I’ve researched them all i think.

        1. Rhonda Gillespie Floyd

          I learned that Cocolicious and Party Animal was produced in the Evangers plant here on Truth About Petfood! I immediately stopped all the party animal after reading the FDA critique (link provided here on TAPF) of the Evangers plant! Done with trusting anyone except me to make food for my babies!!

        2. Judy G.

          We started 5 holistic chihuahua Facebook groups and I am going to tell all of my members to stop feeding Cocolicious and Evangers and start cooking for your dogs! At least you know what they are getting!

      5. Judy G.

        So am I. That’s it! Time to start home cooking. At least you know what they are putting in their mouths that way!

    2. Brett

      You can tell from the printed date at the bottom of their cans– each company that co-packs at Evanger’s has the same curved date printed at the bottom of the can. I believe Weruva’s pate style cans (their Kobe line) co-packs there along with PetKind. Not sure who else does. Weruva has addressed the issue and appears to have plans to use a different cannery front their official statement. I stopped trusting Cocolicious after discovering they co-packed at Evanger’s and after my co- worker found a metal bolt in one of their cans of dog food (I work for a holistic pet food store that used to sell Cocolicious).

    3. Vivi

      Check the bottoms of the cans! Evangers symbol is the exp date printed in a crescent shape, similar to a part moon. Any cans with that printing is canned in the same place, which I was told Evangers owns and can produce cross contamination.

  2. Sarah O'Hare

    I’m very appreciative to learn this information. The saga continues which is so tragic but I hope the problem is gaining more attention! Anyone else impacted by Evanger’s Hunk of Beef, etc I hope you will read below:

    Our boxer, Mason, was impacted by Evanger’s Hunk of Beef in December and he was so ill he lapsed into a non-responsive state and was at Vet for almost 5 days. Evanger’s said they sent my $9k in vet bills to their “insurance” company but no action or reimbursement yet – and despite the fact they have a video of his collapse and all the documentation of our Evanger’s HOB purchases. I would like to hear from anyone else who is dealing with Evanger’s in the HOB situation. Maybe there is power in joint work on this topic!

    1. Cynthia Peraza

      DM us on Instagram @portiathepug

  3. Sherrie Ashenbremer

    This is horrible, why can’t pet food makers take better care for healthy ingredients

    1. spotmagicsolis

      Becsuse they only care about the bottom line. THE BOTTOM LINE.

  4. sarahj44

    I am really upset by this. I have 2 cases of Party Animal in the basement and my 3 dogs get some every day to supplement their higher quality kibble. Has seemed fine but I am now seeking a replacement canned food, preferably organic and the other organic options gave my dogs an off tummy. I don’t have the time space or money to do raw or cook for my dogs in addition to cooking for family and working. Feeling up against the wall.

    1. Kim

      Why not just boil some chicken breast or brown some ground beef?

      1. sarahj44

        I need food that can be grabbed in a hurry by any of us, my kids included, no time to cook. If we cook they get a little of that too if it is dog safe. Busy family life!

        1. angela

          have a crock pot? throw some meat in it on low and let it cook on low all day.

      2. B Dawson

        I would not recommend feeding only chicken or ground beef. Muscle meat does not constitute a complete diet.

        You need to add in organ meat and some source of minerals such as would be found in bones. Bone meal itself can be tricky as it can carry a substantial amount of lead. The shorter the animals’ life, the less likely the bones are to carry large amounts, i.e., beef bones would have a longer time to absorb lead than chicken bones.

        1. Judy G.

          There are plenty of instructions on how to make your own dog food on the internet. Start looking around and pick one that sounds good. There are certain things you should add, like dried and powdered eggshells, some vitamins.. whatever. It all looks fairly simple and you can make a large amount at a time and freeze it in individual dishes. Try Chi Yum Yum’s Facebook page. Teresa Costanzo
          has a recipe that she feeds hers.

      3. Judy G.

        Exactly! There are plenty of websites on the internet that tell you what to do and what to add. I am going to start tomorrow. That’s it for me! no more canned dog food, organic or not!

    2. Paula

      How about freeze dried or dehydrated food — e.g., Sojos Wild, Primal, Honest Kitchen, or NRG Maxim in lieu of canned? Or Orijen freeze dried as long as it continues to be made in Canada (unlike the kibble sold in the U.S. and now made in KY) All good brands made in their own facilities, no recalls, etc. I mix them in with kibble (Fromm, Anna Maet, and the last of the Canadian Orijen) – I have been increasing the ratio of the freeze dried/dehydrated to kibble. All you have to do is mix the food with warm water. Some of them take a bit longer than others to rehydrate. Some folks say never combine raw and kibble/cooked in a meal. My dogs’ stools are firm and their coats are glorious. And they LOVE their food and lick the bowls including my formerly picky guy. Just start small when introducing the change. If money is an issue, just give them a small amount of the above foods with the kibble. Also when you make something for your family that is also healthy for the dogs, mix some of that into their food — just don’t go overboard since it isn’t balanced — share meat, chicken, vegetables etc. – no onions, garlic. Google what they can and can’t eat if you aren’t sure. Good luck!

      1. sarahj44

        Thanks Paula, good ideas, yes money is an issue esp. with 3 dogs 🙂 We do give them what we eat if safe for them, small amounts mixed with their kibble. Money, space, time all at premiums. Thanks again.

      2. JaneeS

        My understanding is that pet food regulations in Canada are no better than in USA and possibly there is even less regulation. Maybe someone on this site can confirm that, because I believe that I actually read comments on this site from Canadian people and others who know more about it. That being said, almost everyone feels that Orijen makes high quality products. I have recently read that pet food manufactured in New Zealand is highly regulated and tested for problems, but I don’t have a link to share with you right now. Again, if anyone else has facts instead of my possibly flawed remembrance of information, please let me know. I will do more research later.

        1. Paula

          I am not feeding the US product because there are many comments about dogs getting sick on the new product and few about them doing well. Could just be sensitivity to the new formulas by some dogs or switching too quickly. Of course those who have a problem are more likely to post. But there are a LOT of negative comments.

    3. Renee Ferranco

      We feed our Doberman canned Trippet produced by PetKind. They have beef, bison, lamb and other types of tripe. Our dog loves it mixed with her other food. Smells bad but it’s so good for her we put up with the odor during feeding time.

      1. James Guptill

        Tripett is made at Evanger’s

        1. Christine

          Tripett actually makes their own food and delivers the finished product to Evangers, who puts it into cans and then cooks it for them. An unusual relationship, but it means Evangers is not involved in the sourcing or processing of ingredients, if that helps you make a decision.
          We’re bringing in a new brand shortly called Tender and True – it was only available at Whole Foods, now going into Independent stores. Organic or antibiotic free, GAP certified humane and MSC certified seafood at a really reasonable price. It’s manufactured at Performance cannery.
          The Cocolicious news really brings up a very important new piece of the Evanger’s puzzle. When a cannery is Organic certified, this is supposed to be creating layers of additional protection for the ingredients involved, especially concerning the absolute separation of ingredients used in the organic certified foods from the rest of what a co-packer is making for other lines, and to ensure that the lines that are used for the organic foods are designated for them (to make sure that non-certified foods are not sharing equipment, etc). In my understanding, these certifications are supposed to entail additional inspections as a part of their organic certification, to make sure these things are happening. I believe that the fact that they found pentobarbital in the Cocolicious should call into question their ability to keep their organic certification at all.

          1. WhatAboutTheBee

            Christine, don’t the other nasty conditions at the Evangers cannery bother Trippet? The conditions listed on the FDA 483 report are terrible.

            Your reply also leads one to believe you may be associated with Trippet, would you kindly disclose your relationship with them.

        2. B Dawson


          Based on the volumes of information that Christine has posted under other threads, I will offer this…..

          She owns a holistic pet store and spends hours and hours researching pet food topics to be certain her customers are receiving the best quality that can be had. If she sounds more knowledgeable than the average bear it because of that research and not an affiliation with a particular food company.

      2. Chris

        I’ve started to get frozen rolls of tripe at my pet store as an alternate to canned.

  5. sarahj44

    Susan do you know if anyone has tested Newmans canned organic dog food for bad things? That brand seems fine for my dogs… Not sure what to do now.

  6. Paula

    Does anyone have a list of who makes what for whom? There was a list published quite a few years ago but I haven’t seen anything recent.

    Is there such a thing as a co-packer whose products are “safe”– i.e., no significant recalls, no issues with substitution of ingredients, no cross-contamination of one product with another, and no products using ingredients from China or any other “dangerous products”for any of its customers. For me if any “bad” ingredients come into the plant there is the chance they will end up in an otherwise good product.

    Seems like small food and treat companies have few if any options. If a company doesn’t make its own stuff I won’t buy it. Seems like an opportunity for a good co-packer

    Susan – never apologize for too many posts — you are one person whose e-mails we all appreciate — each and every one. Enjoy your new baby!

    1. Peter

      The responsibility for ensuring that a co-packer (contract manufacturer) fulfills the specifics of the contract lie with the parent company. Companies like Evanger’s and BB perpetually seize on the “blame the supplier!” to excuse their failures.

      1. Laurie Matson

        At this point there is now two pet food manufacturers that make pet food for other companies. Evangers and Diamond. Avoid all brands made at those two Facilities at all costs!!! This is just terrible. It is reaching the point that soon everyone will need to prepare they’re own pet food if they want they’re pets to remain alive and well. They are completely failing pet food consumers and get a F grade in my grade book.

    2. Sherrie Ashenbremer

      I agree with Paula, you Susan can never have to many posts. we need your information, your are our eyes and ears for quality food for our babies. You can send 10 posts each day, it is ok with me

  7. Beck

    This is just maddening! Thinking you might be a little safer buying a more “premium” pet food is pure folly! I just switched my very finicky dog off of cocoliscious a month ago after feeding for some time (he becomes “done” with the same brand after a while). I’d fully intended on bringing it back into rotation in a few months but will definitely not now. He’s currently eating “Daves” …hope this doesn’t happen with it. All we can do anymore is hope for the best, that’s just messed up.

    1. WhatAboutTheBee

      Daves is made by Evangers too

  8. Jane

    Thank you SO much for putting this out so quickly! One of the (many) things that left me speechless about the Evanger’s recall was how long it took them to notify the public. You (and therefore they) knew about it a full month before the FDA recall went out. It’s a miracle that more pets weren’t affected.

    We feed our cats this brand – at least, we used to. That stops today!

    When Evanger’s had the recall, Party Animal sent out a statement saying they had full confidence that their product wasn’t affected because their ingredients are “sourced independently.” But when Evanger’s posted invoices to prove that their ingredients were, in fact, “edible,” one of them included an order of organic beef, as well. And none of Evanger’s Organic foods contain beef. (I suppose they might use organic beef in their conventional foods, but it isn’t listed as such on the label. And wouldn’t be very cost effective.) I wondered if they had posted an invoice for Party Animal and represented it as their own. (The ingredients would ship to Evanger’s, so they’d have the invoices.) Now, I wonder if Party Animal was telling the truth.

    It’s so disheartening!

  9. LotusCat

    Have there been any reports of Pentobarbital in Party Animal/Evanger’s CAT food? I imagine some of the same meat ingredients may go into both? One of my cats had something very wrong last week which I couldn’t figure out. She’s a feral rescue (lives indoors with us though) and she was practically lifeless, meaning I could touch her and almost pick her up in ways she has never allowed in 8 years we’ve had her. Her ears were very cold, she kept trying to hide in dark places. I was beside myself since she’s difficult (basically impossible) to handle under most circumstances I managed to get some homeopathic Nux Vomica into her. By morning she was back to her normal self. It had started the previous afternoon – she threw up a hairball (she almost never has hairballs) and some bile; no food. No diarrhea either. I searched around the house for anything she could have eaten, gotten on her paws and licked off, etc. Nothing. She has an 85% (organic, human grade) raw diet, with some canned every so often… I’m quite sure Party Animal Darling Duck is what she ate earlier that day (!!!!!).
    –How would I go about getting the remaining cans I have, tested? (Including perhaps requesting the local pet store I get it from to get it tested)?
    –And what would the symptoms of exposure to Pentobarbital in cats be?

    1. Lisa P

      Thank goodness you had the knowledge to use the Nux Vomica for your kitty! And were tuned in well enough to your kitty to know something was wrong.

      1. LotusCat

        I rely on holistic care for all my cats. Yes Lisa, I had to get creative though, because it’s impossible to pill her!! She will always maintain her feral nature. So did a wet dose of 30C Nux (dissolved pellets in spring water) and dripped on her fur so she could lick off. I also kept applying Olive and Rock Rose flower remedies, topically, to restore vital force. And then just let her rest while observing/monitoring (sleepless night for me!). Decided taking her to vet would cause her much more stress and would only do if it looked like she was in a really dire situation. Plus at the time I had no idea what to even tell them could be wrong with her. I’m quite convinced now, that it was the Party Animal canned she ate earlier that day, since nothing else makes sense. I’ve been to pet store today and they were unaware of the Evanger’s issue at all. The store owner hopefully is going to have the lots they have of all the flavors submitted for testing. I couldn’t get lot # since the can already got picked up for recycling.

        1. BreRe

          Thanks so much, LotusCat, for posting. I’ve always said it’s in the comment section below a thoughtful article where one can sometimes gain surprising insights.

          Based on what you’ve shared, I’ve ditched feeding Cocolicious to my cat.

        2. BreRe

          I never did trust their ‘organic’ claim; seemed too good to be true for the price charged, given what I know about feeding myself human-grade organic. But my cat settled on the brand during a period when he was rejecting almost everything else I tried. I don’t want to go into the long story here about the health issue that was causing him to refuse food, but what ultimately worked was adding CherryCure, and Cocolicious just happened to be the brand I was cycling through (on an experimental, trial basis) at the moment the cherry effect kicked in. So I stuck with it.

          Not anymore! (CherryCure stays, Cocolicious is history.)

        3. BreRe

          And I’m sure that I’m not alone in being very interested to hear the follow-up to your story, if you’d care to share more!

          (Sorry for the multiple postings. This website really doesn’t work too well in my browser. The “Post Comment” button disappears if I try to post more than about 11 lines at a time!)

  10. Linda

    I also have Party Animal organic Blazin Beef, Wild Caught Salmon & Pork and Kickin Chicken. I’ve been meaning to switch over to The Honest Kitchen and will do it now. So frustrating. Thanks Susan for alerting us ONE MORE TIME.

  11. I only feed grain free dry kibble Orijen. After researching it, it is the best dog food in market.

  12. apuginthekitchen

    Thank you for this, there is a fairly long list of foods that is canned at the Evangers facility. Some have stopped using Evangers to can and others will not. All are pet foods that are listed as high quality, human grade and organic. Evangers is poisoning dogs and there must be repurcussions for their blatant disregard. It is criminal.

  13. NY

    Is it now for us to assume as well that ORGANIC Party Animal is not in fact using organic beef sources but labeling it as such? The beef in question from Evanger’s Hunk of Beef Braised Beef and Against the Grain’s Pulled Beef Products were all conventional. Is Party Animal mislabeling their product as organic, charging for such, when it’s actually the same tainted conventional beef used in all their other non organic products? I am sorry for all the family hardships due to simply feeding which ought to be done with confidence. I would not trust this company in any direction based on their personal history as well. That type of attitude will cheat, cut corners in every direction possible and never look back. I am thankful to the family that took on the testing project, shared it and in doing so will save many lives. Does anyone do a mass mailing to CEOs of online pet food distributers when information such as this becomes available? Do any of them ever pull products without a recall but solely based on testing evidence?

    1. Jane Democracy

      This is the problem with private label manufacturers… the original company may or may not have any knowledge as to what is actually used in their recipe. They are not physically involved in the process.
      In fact the recipe/formula may not even be designed by them. They may request the ingredients that they want in the product, sign off on that, agree to a price… But after that substitutions can be made and are made. Depending on their Quality Program they may never look into what the private label manufacturer is doing, many of them don’t know this, don’t even think about it or don’t care. They should be conducting audits of their suppliers and of their suppliers, suppliers. I’ve seen companies with beautiful quality assurance paperwork that never translated into what happened at the factory level. I don’t trust ingredient listings on private label foods. Never.. there can be too many substitutions. Never ever will I…
      Recalls should always be based on testing evidence, audit evidence or process evidence and regulatory bodies should be notified if the product carries risk and has left the factory. A recall is the process of accounting for all product made, where it went (who it was distributed and sold to) and who consumed it (alerting the public) after a deviation is found. IMO there is no excuse for pet food manufacturers/distributors of any kind not knowing what products are being recalled. The information is available they should be looking for it… not waiting for it to fall in their laps.
      Evanger’s just continues to prove they are a complete disaster of a company. Their quality assurance program is a complete failure, they absolutely cannot deny this now.

  14. Eva Woolridge

    Thank you so much for these updates. At this point Nature’s Logic is one of the few dry and canned food brands that I feel comforable feeding my dog and cat. I still keep watch of my pets just in case something happens though especially with what has been happening recently. I seriously hope the brand’s co-packer doesn’t get this issue. How does a drug like that even get into pet food?

    1. Paula

      Based on an earlier post – sorry cut and paste doesn’t work – their products are manufactured at 5 facilities and they supervise most but not all production runs but do testing…just paraphrasing. Not putting down NL but if they don’t hands-on supervise 100% of everything in every batch –order placement, testing of raw materials, manufacture, packaging, etc., how can you be sure? Maybe the testing would catch that – I do not know, but I am paranoid for my furry kids. The co-packer can be careless or malicious or great for that matter. Assuming not malicious – if there are any “bad” ingredients used by the co-packer for any other products in the facility, (think corn gluten) an error could occur. I would only use a co-packer if all products they make contain only healthy ingredients. Is there such a co-packer?

  15. Michael

    Any can of pet food stamped on the bottom with a curved lot number and expiration date is made at Evangers.

  16. B Dawson

    Didn’t Party Animal make a statement that their food was canned on a completely different line for strictly organic food and that they (Party Animal) provided the ingredients which were held separately from all other Evanger meat? If my memory is accurate then somebody’s pants are on fire.

  17. Debi

    Doesn’t it just figure that these people would never respond to your inquiries Susan??? dishonest to the core. scumbags all.

  18. aNOTHER

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  19. Lisa P

    I hope folks know that Pentobarbital is what is used to euthanize animals. What that tells us is that dead animals are being rendered into the food!!!!! Horrifying!

    1. Paula

      And I don’t believe it is used on cows. So what is the animal? Horse meat?

      1. Christine

        Evangers did announce that they found horse meat in their “beef”.

        1. B Dawson

          The FDA found “less than 2%” horse and pig DNA and stated that was consistent with cross contamination at plants that process multiple species. Evanger’s didn’t disclose the amounts their testing found.

          I posted questions on earlier threads about whether a dog could have serious effects from the PB in less than 2% horsemeat in a can of food. It doesn’t make sense although the testing methods make the math difficult to rectify with the research FDA did on PB effects on beagles. The research is reporting doses in mcg/kg of dry food.

          An undated CA government document on euthanasia in livestock does say: “3) Barbiturate: When properly administered by the intravenous route, barbiturate overdose (60-80 mg/kg sodium pentobarbitol IV) produces rapid unconsciousness and anesthesia followed by respiratory depression, hypoxia, and cardiac arrest. THE BARBITURATE SELECTED SHOULD BE POTENT, LONG ACTING, AND STABLE IN SOLUTION. TISSUE RESIDUES OF THE BARBITURATE CAN BE HIGH. CARE SHOULD BE EXCERCISED TO LIMIT ACCESS OF SCAVENGERS TO THE CARCASS.” (Capitalization is mine.)

          So maybe that 2% DNA contamination could be enough?

    2. Jane Eagle

      And, er: cows are not killed using pentobarbitol: there are murdered dogs and/or cats in that “Organic” Beef.

      1. Josh

        It’s horse meat. Evangers stated it did testing and came back positive for horse DNA.

  20. Tori Rosay

    Thank you Susan for the work that you do to keep us all up-to-date & current with this issues – if it wasn’t for this site, we’d all be in the dark, for the pet food manufacturers are sure not willingly going share anything.

    My question: Why didn’t Daryl & Steve, owners of PARTY ANIMAL *RUSH* to have their formulas tested immediately!!! after finding out about Evanger’s issues of pentobarbital? My guess is that they wanted to bury their heads in the sand and not deal with it – so disappointing.

    Would hope that 10 years after the 2007 pet-food disaster that the dirty world of pet food manufacturing would be further along. We have lots of educating and work to still be done.

  21. Deep Search

    Hasn’t it been pet foods containing beef that have been found to contain pentobarbital? Not foods that are poultry based or fish or lamb etc…? It is legal to sell euthanized cats and dogs to be rendered and the end product can be sold as “beef byproducts.” This byproduct is a meal, though, which is made into things like feed to be fed to fish on fish farms overseas. Since the pentobarbital is being found in canned foods, the meat used should be fresh, or “fresh,” not a meat meal. But somehow animals that have been put to sleep with pentobarbital are being used as pet food ingredients. Cattle aren’t usually put down this way. Neither are other farmed animals.

    Evanger’s has blamed their suppliers for the presence of pentobarbital in their food. So where are the suppliers getting this meat from, is the question.

  22. Jane Eagle

    Since when is pentobarbitol organic???

    1. VitalVet

      That caught my eye as well, Jane. Sheesh. Likely people are paying a premium for organic, coconut oil, and veggies/fruit, as they are unknowingly feeding euthanized horse meat. Makes one’s head swim.

  23. Mary Marseglia

    If people would just stop being brain washed by the PFI and their allopathic vets, and start feeding the way their dogs & cats bodies have been not only designed but have been eating for domestic dogs 30,000+yrs and cats 12,000yrs, which is a COMPLETE RAW DIET, then you wouldn’t have these problems to worry about.

    I advise everybody to feed what they have always eaten and primarily from herbivore animals as well, NOT tons of poultry, pork or fish. Herbivore animals would be beef, lamb(sheep), goat, rabbit, venison, elk, bison, etc etc Quail & guinea fowl is better than any chicken or turkey(also that is also what is eaten in the wild by your pets ancestors, very rare that chicken or turkey is eaten and yes, I’ve studied wolves for 35+yrs and most all wild cats for 30+yrs) Duck & goose is definitely eaten but not as primary diet.

    I say this many times, and some people get ticked off, but seems they don’t want to hear the truth and that is people that feed dry kibble & most canned foods, feed this due to “human convenience” Yes, they love their pets, but its easy to poor something out of a bag or take out of a can.

    And no, science will NEVER make a commercial food that is better or even same as what Nature Intended for your pets to always eat, which is a “complete” raw diet.

    1. Elizabeth Kramer

      Amen. A complete raw diet is exactly what dogs should have and what cats MUST have, biologically. Often people do not understand the word “complete” – meaning it has the full suite of vitamins and minerals in the appropriate amounts that the pets need. Yu can’t just grab some ground beef and feed it and think your pet with thrive. Organ meat and bones and internal to the diet, in proper proportions. Answers Pet Food does it best because it’s fermented, but Tucker’s, NorthWest Naturals, and Small Batch do a great job as well.

      Regarding the Cocolicious. Let’s take a minute and use some logic, and wait for all of the facts to come in. I found upsetting and irresponsible that Party Animal wasn’t given a chance to follow up on their test results before being thrown under the Evanger’s bus so publicly.

      I’m just being the Devil’s Advocate here, but follow along for a moment…..Usually, people don’t submit their pet food to be tested by a lab. If someone were to do that, there would be a whole battery of tests run, not just one for pentobarbital. Things like bacteria, mold, viruses, and endotoxins would be tested first. Where are those results? Someone would have to request a test for pentobarbital. I wonder if this person just handed 2 open cans over to a lab and said “test for pesto”. That person could be litigious. They may have heard about all the scandals involving Evanger’s. And they *may* have decided to see what they could gain financially. They could have tainted the food themselves.

      The pet food industry is big business. And people know that any incident could make or break a company. Pet food companies even hire “moles” to hang out in big box stores and side talk loudly about other brands in front of customers to steer them toward a specific brand. It can be pretty cut throat.

      All I’m saying is let’s give Cocolicious, a brand I feed and will continue to feed until I know otherwise, a chance to prove themselves. Their track record has been stellar to this point.

  24. GG

    Pieces of critical information are left out, what was the dog’s illness? Was it left out for a reason? Is there any evidence that the illness has anything to do with the food or is it even food related? You also left out the date of manufacture of the food, why is that? as you have included it before. Your story thanks the pet owner of a foster dog?

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      GG – you honestly amaze me at your defense of Evanger’s. Blind faith in a company that doesn’t deserve your confidence in them. These are test results – I didn’t leave out date of manufacture – that information was not included on the results. The pet that got sick was a foster – so yes, I thanked her for her effort to have unopened cans tested (yes, they were unopened cans). You need to stop visiting this website. We aren’t for you. We have no allegiance to any pet food brand – our only allegiance is to consumers. Clearly your allegiance is to Evanger’s…this website is certainly not for you.

  25. lesliek

    Anything canned at Evanger’s has a curved printed bb date & code . All other manufacturers use a straight line stamp .

  26. Kelly D

    OMG! I called Party Animal right after having bought 6 cases and learned they were packed by Evangers. I had picked this brand because of all the positive information about it and needed a replacement for Mulligan Stew since they unfortunately discontinued business. Party Animal assured me there was no potential for their foods to be affected by the pentobarbital problem with Evangers as their meats and products are all verified by organic regulations before processing.

    I just brought my Maggie home from a weekend of hell and $3,000 emergency care to treat an acute case of hemorrhagic gastroenteritis! Could this be connected? She’s been being treated for oral malignant melanoma and has been responding to chemo beautifully. Just had 3-month checkup and is in excellent condition so far. Until 2 days after that checkup when she began vomiting blood and and passing blood in stools. I’m terrified now. Doctors confirmed no connection to cancer treatment but now must suspend chemo treatment for a week so she can try to heal. I still have cans left from all 6 cases. We live very rural, hours away from any big city. What should I do next. We are maxed out emotionally and financially at this point. Please any input?

    Cases bought:
    – Cocolicious Wholesome Duck – 0161E1635811 Best by Dec 2020
    – Cocolicious Organic Turkey – 0160E1635807 Best by Dec 2020
    – Cocolicious Organic Chicken – 0159E1631608 Best by Nov 2020
    – Cocolicious Wholesome Lamb & Wild Caught Salmon – 0139E1633605 Best by Dec 2020
    – Party Animal Organic Kickin’ Chicken – 0103E1628704 Best by Oct 2020
    – Cocolicious Organic Beef – 0156E1629104 Best by Oct 2020

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      Just in case this is related – please report this to FDA. You can do that here: Hold onto the cans in case FDA would want to test them. You can also report this to your State Department of Agriculture – go here: to find your representative. The State too might test the food for you. I would suggest reporting the lab results in this post to the veterinarians at the emergency center Maggie was treated at (letting them know other varieties of this brand tested positive for pentobarbital) – they could tell you more if her sudden illness might be pet food related.

      1. Kelly D

        Ok Thank you. The company I bought the food from is sending me a return label to ship back what’s left. They gave me permission to keep a can from each case in case something further developed and I needed proof.

        1. Susan Thixton Author

          I would wait until you report to FDA first – see if they need more than one can, before you return it.

          1. Kelly D

            OK. Again Thank you. You have no idea how much I appreciate your help.

  27. karen paul

    Evangers also makes dog food for a company called great life pet food. Their line of dog food is called great life essentials. Years ago I gave this to my dog and when I asked the company who makes their food they told me Evangers. I immediately stopped feeding it to my dog because I had heard too many negatives and problems with evangers.

  28. sarahj44

    I don’t see it noted here, and did not receive a reply from Party Animal when I emailed them my concerns, but they have a recall notice/discussion posted in small letters on their website, for the 2 brands that came up positive for pentobarb.

  29. NY

    How long do you think it will be before Evanger’s puts effort and financing toward changing their distinctive curved stamp in order to disassociate themselves from their terrible reputation in the industry? Bet that they are working on that right now!

    1. B Dawson

      I’ve wondered the same thing. More likely the cannery will be sold just like Menu did after the Great Pet Food Recall. I don’t know how much longer Evanger’s can blame supplies for their troubles and expect the public to buy it. You can’t blame the prior administration forever!

  30. Terri Christenson Jansoj

    sigh………Will continue to make my 6 dogs their food. Made up a big batch yesterday.

  31. Cynthia Shell-Terrell

    From a report on Pet MD on why barbiturates are showing up in pet food. Rendering. Using euthanized pets from shelters in pet foods.

    “And here, included in a 2004 report to Congress on the rendering industry, is how it happens at the level of the independent rendering plant:

    These plants (estimated by NRA at 165 in the United States and Canada) usually collect material from other sites using specially designed trucks. They pick up and process fat and bone trimmings, inedible meat scraps, blood, feathers, and dead animals from meat and poultry slaughterhouses and processors (usually smaller ones without their own rendering operations), farms, ranches, feedlots, animal shelters, restaurants, butchers, and markets. As a result, the majority of independents are likely to be handling “mixed species.” Almost all of the resulting ingredients are destined for nonhuman consumption (e.g., animal feeds, industrial products). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates animal feed ingredients, but its continuous presence in rendering plants, or in feed mills that buy rendered ingredients, is not a legal requirement.

    So how has this continued to pass under our radar? Those generic, unspecified proteins and fats included in your pet’s food? They may well — legally — include canine and feline bodies.”

  32. B Dawson

    There may be a simple explanation for the Party Animal contamination.

    Evanger’s uses the same canning line to manufacture it’s own line of organic cans as it does for other companies’ products. Most likely, after canning Evanger’s organic products, the line was not cleaned and Party Animal’s ingredients were dumped into the hopper and production continued. In other words, the last bit of Evanger’s ingredients mingled with Party Animal’s and the first few lots were contaminated. Who knows, Evanger’s may have even been using the organic line for non-organic foods rather than leave it idle and not producing income. Of course that isn’t legal and would result in the loss of the organic certification, but this is Evanger’s!

    I would be far more inclined to believe that Evanger’s is not being honest about their organic ingredients than Party Animal. Evanger’s has a track record decades long that shows they put costs ahead of product quality or worker safety. Stopping the production line for steam cleaning means a day or more of no production, i.e. no income.

    Does Party Animal bear any responsibility for this serious event? Oh you better believe they do! Without a representative on hand to supervise the manufacture of their product, Party Animal is saying they completely trust the company that is co-packing their food. They believe that the quality ingredients they send to the plant are being handled properly and their recipe is being followed as spelled out in the contract they signed with Evanger’s.

    Sadly, this is how ALL foods are co-packed. Nobody has their reps on hand to supervise the manufacture of their product. The naivety of this approach is no longer sustainable. With so few co-packers available (and the flood of new foods continuing), no company can trust that their food is being made as contracted or that the equipment is being cleaned between brands, especially with the shortage of organic certified canning lines.

    It’s expensive for a companies to send a rep to supervise. But what if an entrepreneur started a company that provides proxy reps for the food companies? Trained and bonded independent supervisors could watch over the manufacture process and warn the private label if anomalies are observed, triggering a testing process to check on the quality. It would keep the co-packers more honest and save the labels the continued bad press. It might even accrue enough evidence of misconduct for FDA to could clean up the industry. doG knows FDA doesn’t have the manpower to do it themselves.

  33. Marilyn C. Klein

    Even tho I don’t have dogs that have been impacted by this recall, I do feed some Party Animal cat foods to my cats. I emailed them about this to see if any cat food was affected. As of 4/20/2017 no cat food has been tainted. I feed mostly Fromm dry and canned cat food and emailed them to see who their co-packer is. The response I received is below:

    Thank you for your email. We are always dismayed to hear about recalls or challenges within our industry. Please rest assured that our commitment to safety and quality of all our foods and treats from ingredient sourcing, to manufacturing, to shipping stays strong and steadfast. In regards to our manufacturing Fromm does not use a co-packer as we have our own family-owned-and-operated facilities. More specifically, we have our family-owned cannery and dry food plants all located in Wisconsin. Please let me know if you have any additional questions or if I can help you further. I would be happy to help.

    I will continue to only use this brand to feed my kitties. They also produce dog food. I have a cat with IBS and since using Fromm, she is completely better. All of my rescued kitties love this food – dry and canned.

  34. Marilyn C. Klein

    With this tainted pet feed still going on and new brands being found to be contaminated with pentobarbital, I wanted to state a previous response I had made. I used to feed Party Animal to my cats until I read, here, about the contamination. I now only feed Fromm Foods – dry and canned to my cats. They do their own packing from start to finish and their foods can be ordered at My cats love the foods and if anything goes wrong, it’s all on them as they have complete charge of the whole operation. My original response (4/24/2017) contains an email that I received from them concerning my inquiry to ask whom their co-packer is. Hope they stay true to their commitment to provide superior & safe food.

  35. DJ

    Thank you for the information, Marilyn. I, too, have been feeding my cats Party Animal Canned, supplemented by Fromm Dry. I am trying to switch them over to Fromm canned too, but it’s not been a success quite yet. I only have turkey flavor, which they love in Party Animal, but my former feral baby, the pickiest of the bunch (which supports my theory that she was a born a princess, kidnapped and hidden in the wilds), won’t go near it. Even if I put her dab in a separate bowl, she won’t touch her meal until I remove the offending dish from her sight. I warm it up like I do their other food (float in a bowl of warm water), but no go. I’m hoping the duck flavor will go over better, as that’s her favorite in Party Animal and Fromm dry.

    I used to cook for my kitties, but cooking for cats is harder than dogs, as it’s more difficult to ensure cats get their complete nutritional needs. And for many of us, it’s a time/energy factor. I now have time, because I got sick (I was exposed to mold at a public building) and can no longer work, but due to the mold exposure and later Epstein Barr and Lyme, both brought on by the mold exposure (the “gift” that keeps on giving), I can barely keep up with simple meals for my husband and I. Luckily, he helps a lot. So many of us rely on responsible manufacturers to produce safe and healthy foods for our furbabies.

    And really, this should not be an issue anyway! Foods, pet foods and our foods, should be safe! They should not be tainted with toxic chemicals, pesticides, alflatoxins, antibiotics and other drugs, etc., but be safe! Greed has destroyed our safe food system. Which is insane, as we all need food to survive. Years ago when I was in college, I took a sales class, which was rumored to be hard, as the teacher was tough. One day, he asked what motivated people to start companies/go into business, and I raised my hand and said, “Greed”. He looked at me for a few beats, then said, “Well, I was looking for ‘profit’, but your answer is also correct.” I was the only person who ever got an A in the course.

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