Dog Training and Dog Care advice from UK Professionals

'Dog Food Recall' Report

Selected Article

Discover the DEADLY Secrets of Commercial Dog Food

Dog Food Recall - April 2007

A third US company recalled pet foods made with imported ingredients from China. The ingredient, rice protein, was contaminated by the industrial chemical 'Melamine'. Wheat gluten has also been contaminated by melamine.

This time it is Royal Canin in the USA who produces 'Vet's Choice' and Royal Canin products. Royal Canin's South African unit indicated that the food had been linked to the deaths of at least 30 pets. Speaking from the Johannesburg based unit, Royal Canin's South African Managing Director, Gregory Watine said:

"The company said tests showed some of its products contained corn gluten contaminated with melamine were processed in South Africa from March 8 to April 11. Royal Canin South Africa is accepting responsibility for any costs incurred by owners whose dogs were ill or that had died".

Guelph, the Ontario based unit of Mars Inc's Royal Canin Canadian unit is also recalling more pet food believed to contain rice gluten also contaminated by melamine.

Another importer of the contaminated rice protein, Wilbur-Ellis Co. in San Fransisco has advised all its customers to recall any products.

In North America a massive recall of the contaminated pet foods began in March, 2007. Initially the recalls were only for wet pet foods made with wheat gluten from China. The Canadian Company 'Menu Foods' began the recall voluntarily on March 16 when their own tests showed sickness and death in their testing animals.

Ultimate HouseTraining Guide

By the end of March the death toll was increasing across the US. As many as 3,600 deaths were reported by April 11 with many more cases of pets being struck down with kidney failure.

The Chinese company denied any involvement but is co-operating with American investigators. The economic impact is colossal. Menu Foods alone has lost in the region of 30 million Dollars.

The majority of the recalled foods stem from Menu Foods, Streetsville, Ontario. Some of the brands are:

  • Sunshine Mills – 20 brands of dog biscuits
  • Nestle Purina Pet Care – Alpo cuts in gravy
  • Del Monte – Cat and Dog snacks
  • Hill's Pet Nutrition – Diet food/Savoury cuts
  • Royal Canin US – Sensible Choice/Veterinarian diet
  • Natural Balance Pet Foods – Venison and Brown Rice, canned/bagged dog food and treats.
Two pet food manufacturers that have been supplied with rice protein concentrate that has been recalled by Wilbur – Ellis have not been named. The US FDA and Wilbur – Ellis refuse to identify the companies involved.

Symptoms To Watch For:
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Depression
  • Excessive Thirst
  • Excessive Urinating
  • Serious cases may display collapse and complete renal failure
As complaints flooded in to Menu Foods officers, samples were sent to Cornell University between March 13 and March 15. No one could find the cause of the animals falling ill so more samples were sent to the New York State Food Laboratory that is part of the Food Emergency Response Network. They reported that “aminopterin” was present in the samples. This was later described in the news as being “rat poison” however this fact was based on Aminopterin's use in 1951 and that is not what the chemical is used for today nor has been for many years. Aminopterin is NOT a legal substance in China.

In mid March another company which remains un-named reported that they had discovered an industrial chemical which was utilised in the manufacture of plastics called melamine.

DEADLY Secrets of Commercial Dog Food - Watch Free Video

On March 27, Cornell University confirmed that they had discovered the presence of melamine in the samples of recalled foods, in the wheat gluten, in the cells of dead pets, and in the urine samples of dead or sick animals.

On March 30, Cornell University and the FDA confirmed the presence of melamine in concentrations as high as 6.6%. The FDA's Chief Veterinarian, Stephen Sundlof said:

"There was a sizeable amount of melamine. You could see the crystals in the wheat gluten."

The crystals were roughly 30% melamine, the rest being made up of cyanuric acid, amilorine and amiloride as discovered by researchers at the University of Guelph, Ontario and Cornells University College of Veterinary Medicine. One researcher believes that the Cyanuric acid is most likely to be causing the renal failure in many animals.

Accident or a Deliberate Action?

The FDA, on April 9 stated that there was a “distinct possibility” that the wheat gluten and rice protein had been deliberately contaminated. Investigators were working to discover whether the melamine had been added intentionally to increase the measured protein content and thereby the value of the product. Measuring protein in pet food is done by measuring the amount of nitrogen present in the food. Melamine is very high in nitrogen. In the past few years, China has had a high melamine production which has led to a massive surplus.

The Chinese Xuzhou Anying Biologic Technology Development Company deny all allegations but are co-operating with the official investigation. Their General Manager denies exporting contaminated goods and said that they were just middle men for other producers of wheat gluten. Doubts were cast on their statement when a truck driver who remains anonymous said:

"They have a factory that makes wheat gluten."

Xuzhou Anying are food ingredient suppliers and have acquired huge amounts of melamine over recent years. The New York Times reported that on March 29, 2007 a representative of Xuzhou Anying wrote the following on a message board for the trading of industrial materials:

"Our company buys large quantities of melamine scrap."

It is believed that melamine was added to the wheat gluten to enhance the protein content thereby making it more expensive.

The importer of the wheat gluten was a company called ChemNutra. ChemNutra claim that they had tested samples of wheat gluten sent to them by Xuzhou Anying which showed “no impurities or contamination".

Another Chinese supplier, Binzhou Futian Biology Technology that exports rice protein to the importer, Wilbur – Ellis, ships their product in white sacks. It was noticed that one of the sacks was pink and had melamine stencilled on it. When questioned by Wilbur-Ellis, Binzhou said that the original sack had broken and a mislabelled but clean, new sack was substituted and that Binzhou Fution only supplies food and food ingredients, not melamine.

Veterinary Secrets Revealed

What is Melamine?

Melamine is produced from Urea and is combined with formaldehyde to produce a resin, a durable plastic and a foam that is used in cleaning products. Urea is a compound of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen. Melamine is found as fabrics, counter tops, glues and flame retardants. The ingestion of melamine may cause kidney stones, cancer or damage to the reproduction organs. Way back in 1945, a study suggested that melamine increased urine output when fed to dogs. The FDA's Centre for Veterinary Medicine's spokesman, Stephen Sundlof said:

"Melamine is not very toxic as a chemical, so we're wondering why we are seeing the kinds of serious conditions, especially the kidney failure, that we're seeing in cats and dogs…We are focusing on the melamine right now because we believe that, even if melamine is not the causative agent, it is somehow associated with the causative agent, so it serves as a marker."

Are humans affected?

The contaminated wheat gluten from Xuzhou Anying was “human grade” and as such could be used for making bread, pasta or rice products. Luckily the FDA had quarantined the human batch before it was sold. Federal US officials are investigating reports that Binzhou Futian rice protein had been used in rice protein in hog food. The California Department of Food and Agriculture placed an American hog farm under quarantine when melamine was found to be present in the urine of hogs on the farm.

China refuses visa's for FDA inspectors

As wheat gluten was realised to be the source of the contamination, investigators traced the gluten used in foods. All came from ChemNutra's Kansas City warehouse. ChemNutra imported 800 metric tonnes of wheat gluten from Xuzhou Anying Biology Technology Development Company of Jiangsu, China between November 29 2006 and March 8 2007. The Chinese government categorically deny any connections to the food poisonings however by April 6 they reported that they were investigating the source of the wheat gluten. They have however refused US FDA requests to inspect any facilities suspected of producing contaminated products.

Pet owners are filing law suits

Many people are now filing law suits against Menu Foods especially for failing to test the food before distribution. What started with the recall of 60 million cans of wet dog and cat food has now escalated into the recall of dried food, biscuits, treats and other pet products. This has brought the 2.6 billion dollar (£1.8 bn) food trade with China into scrutiny.

This is little comfort to the thousands of people whose pets are suffering or whose pets have died from being poisoned with the contaminated food. This may resolve itself politically but for the owners mourning the loss of their beloved animals this will remain in their hearts forever.

Pet food companies in the United Kingdom are not affected by the contamination, but we offer our condolescences and sympathy to all those who have been touched by this outrage, especially the many dogs concerned, who know nothing of financial profits, but who certainly paid the price for our insatiable lust for such things.

This article has been updated >>> Dog Food Recall Update

Make Your Dog Live Longer - Find out whats in your dog's food.

Related Articles:

Natural Dog Food

Dog Food Dangers

K9 Shop... View Cart

BARF Diet for Dogs
Chicken Jerky Dog Treats
Dangers of Dog Food
Dog Food Allergies
Dog Food Recall

Share this K9Obedience page

Free Email Tips
Today's 2 FREE Gifts...

Free Dog Ebook
Get our
most popular
Dog Ebook

Free 'Your Dogs' pageClaim a
'Your Dogs'
page FREE!

Just sign up for our FREE Dog Training Tips below...
(More Information)

Your Name:
Your Email:
Dog's Name:
Hot Products
Best Selling Dog Training Course Best Selling
Dog Training
Ultimate Dog House Training Guide Ultimate Dog
House Training
Dog Health Home Guide
To Dog Health
Border Collie Guide Border Collie
Owner's Guide
Secret Deadly Ingredients of Dog Food Secret Deadly
of Dog Food
Get a FREE Webpage for your dog! Get a FREE
Webpage for
your dog! Your Dogs Page Vet Secrets -
Home Vet Care
Get our Most Popular Dog eBook FREE Today!
Copyright ©2009
All Rights Reserved Worldwide
Site by FAD