Sunday, March 18, 2007

Owners frantic over millions of recalled pet food

From the AP via the Houston Chronicle:

Pet owners were worried today that the pet food in their cupboard may be deadly after millions of containers of dog and cat food sold at major retailers across North America were recalled.

Menu Foods, the Ontario-based company that produced the pet food, said today it was recalling dog food sold under 46 brands and cat food sold under 37 brands including Iams, Nutro and Eukanuba. The food was distributed throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico by major retailers such as Wal-Mart, Kroger and Safeway.

An unknown number of cats and dogs had suffered kidney failure and about 10 died after eating the affected pet food, the company said.

Many stores that sold the affected brands frantically pulled packages off shelves.

Click here for more, and here for the recall list.

This really fucking pisses me off, especially because my brand, Winn-Dixie, is on the list, and my cat Frankie was sick today. Fortunately, little Frank is doing better this evening, and what I've been feeding him and his brother Sammy appears to not be part of the recall. Still, I was nervous all day.

Man, you just know this shit is along the same lines as the recent spinach and peanut butter scares, as well as the Taco Bell lettuce scare a couple of years back: a lax federal regulatory environmnet, coupled with a corporate desire to cut corners, in terms of safety, to squeeze out ever-increasing profits, is putting us all at risk, human, feline, and canine alike. This wouldn't have happened twenty years ago. The goddamned Republicans, and their little wannabe helpers, the Democrats, have totally gutted laws and enforcement programs that used to protect us from tainted food. It's back to Upton Sinclair's The Jungle. No, really, I'm serious. Check out the book Fast Food Nation for some more recent info on this. Things are bad with our food supply.

Expect more scares like this one in the future. And it will most likely be human food next time.

UPDATE: It's now pretty well confirmed that my classmate Derek, who lost his young cat recently to a mysterious kidney failure, was feeding her food that was on the recall list. Derek said he wasn't sure that's what killed her, but to me, this is a smoking gun. His vet speculated that little Rusty drank some anti-freeze, but that wasn't very likely: the point is that the pet doctor said it looked like a poisoning, and the symptoms were the same as with other pet deaths associated with the recall. Fucking bastards killed my friend's cat.