Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Another Nutro Recall

Yet another recall of Nutro products. Some of their puppy food may contain plastic. Please see Christie Keith's blog at Pet Connection for more detailed information.

I am really disgusted with Nutro. They have a lot of recalls and even more mysterious quality control problems that go unaddressed. They have a habit of denying that there's anything wrong until the complaints pile up to numbers that can not be ignored, then they do a poor job announcing the recall and communicating with their customers.

This is a company that built it's reputation on quality and responsibility, for not containing the toxic chemicals that are in so many grocery store brands ... but having one problem after another, acknowledging those problems only when forced to, then trying to play it down as much as possible by failing to communicate clearly and effectively with their customers, doesn't do much to help their reputation in my opinion.

Nutro needs new public relations and quality control staff.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Support Dick's Sporting Goods, Boycott Michael Vick

Dick's Sporting Goods is refusing to sell Michael Vick's jersey.

They're keeping a tally of how many people call in to support them, the results will be forwarded to the NFL as part of a Michael Vick protest.

It's a pretty big deal for a large company like this, especially a sporting goods store to take a stand against a famous athlete.

Contact Dick's Sporting Goods and tell them that you support their decision not to sell Michael Vick's jersey. Their customer service department can be reached at 866-677-4771, press "0" to talk to an operator. Or send them an email .

Spread the word!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Pet Tabs Multivitamins Contain Lead

Written by Jan on August 20, 2009 – 8:56 am

Important disclaimer. I received this alert via e-mail from Dr. R. J. Russell (who earned a Ph.D. in Anatomy and Zoology from Duke University and writes widely about dogs) regarding Pet-Tabs, a multivitamin made by Pfizer and widely sold. It concerns a report he said was made by ConsumerLab, a subscription testing site. I am not a member and have not independently verified the report although I did communicate with Dr. Russell about it. I also checked the site and found Pet-Tabs listed in their multivitamin report. You can read it if you’re a member.

If you use this product, I suggest you to subscribe to or write them and ask about it. Or write Dr. Russell. Please do not contact me. I have no further information. Read the report for yourself when making your decision as to whether to continue the product or not. I am not a vet or a research scientist. I do not use the product. I do not sell vitamins. This is for information purposes only. – Jan



Robert Jay Russell, Ph.D.,a

Coton de Tulear Club of America President,

(607) 693-2828


I cannot emphasize enough the extreme danger these multivitamins represent. Quixotically, they are not being recalled and the FDA has taken no notice of the results of testing published by

ConsumerLab, a paid subscriber testing service, tested Pet-Tabs Complete Daily for Dogs in 2007 and again in 2009. They found very high levels of lead contamination in the product: 1.41 mcg (in 2007) and 6.45 mcg (in 2009). The latter is nearly 13 times above the level mandated as safe by the state of California.

Dr. Russell continues:

Pet-Tabs are perhaps the most widely sold dog and cat vitamin supplement. We’ve used them (albeit not for many years). Pet-Tabs are sold by PetsMart, Doctors Foster and Smith, and virtually every pet shop, and on-line pet store in the nation. Pet-Tabs are made by the giant Pfizer Pharmaceutical Corporation, one of America’s leading opponents of health care reform and industry inspection and regulation. Pet-Tabs are sold under another corporate name: “Virbac” << >>

ConsumerLab tests mostly human products. Sadly, this report and the previous years’ report confirming lead contamination in Pfizer/Virbac Pet-Tab supplements calls into serious question the safety and efficacy of these giant corporations’ entire product lines.

ConsumerLab tests mostly human products. There is no other information (such as why or how this supposed animal health care product has been laced with toxic levels of lead for years).


Lead can be absorbed through the skin or, in the case of these supplements, ingested and absorbed. Clinical signs can be gastrointestinal and/or neurological. Many dogs or cats who are chronically ill, have upset stomachs, anorexia (food avoiders), blood disorders, kidney disorders (degeneration of the glomeruli and tubules), immunological problems, reproductive problems, or are suffering abnormal behavioral signs could have suffered chronic, catastrophic lead poisoning through supplements.

Before this revelation of supplement poisoning, the most common known cause of lead poisoning in people and dogs was contact with lead based paint or old car batteries. Other common causes of lead poisoning include ingestion of lead shot (fatal to many wild birds and sometimes served up in food that is hunted) and handling lead painted toys and ceramic ware. During the past 6,000 years humans have mined and redistributed lead on the planet to the extent that each of us has approximately 1,000 times the lead in our system (as measured in our bones) than prehistoric North American Indians.

Puppies absorb lead more readily than adults and are at greatest immediate risk for signs of lead poisoning, but lead poisoning can prove debilitating, even fatal for mature pets as well.

If your dog suffers from the diffuse signs of lead poisoning or if your dog or cat have been exposed to Pet-Tabs, the CTCA recommends you have its blood tested for lead concentration. Children in the household should also be tested should your pet prove contaminated.


I would avoid all vitamin and mineral supplement products sold under labels by either Pfizer or Virbac. These include labels such as “Pet-Tinic,” and “Lixotinic,” and “Liqui-Tinic,” which are generally sold for large animals.

Save any bottles of these products in a sealed Zip Loc bag. Label the bag well, stating “DO NOT USE - POISON!” You may need a sample of this product should your dog or cat become symptomatic. You will need to save the original packaging and product should Pfizer/Virbac be subject to a Class Action suit.


Veterinarians normally do not first associate gastrointestinal, immunological or even neurological signs with lead poisoning. Given America’s current largely untested, unregulated food, supplement, and pharmaceutical supply, perhaps they should.

Should your vet need additional information about lead toxicity, its diagnosis and treatment, I suggest the following available, up-to-date references:

Michael E. Peterson, Patricia A. Talcott (editors), “Small Animal Toxicology, Second Edition,” Saunders Elsevier, St. Louis, MO. 2006

Ramesh G. Gupta (editor) “Veterinary Toxicology: Basic and Clinical Principles,” Academic Press, New York, NY. 2007.


That question is analogous to asking: “what food is safe?” It’s a crap shoot to be sure. ConsumerLab tested only three pet supplements; one was “Halo Purely for Pets VitaGlo Daily Greens.” It did not contain lead, but it contained less than half its advertised vitamins. “21st Century Pet Nutrition Pet Chews Plus” was “approved” since it did not contain lead and its ingredients were as labeled.

Our veterinarian believes that one-half a Centrum Senior (human vitamin) is safe and effective for a dog the size of a Coton de Tulear. But without widespread government tests of our food, drug and supplement supply, who knows?

We have been using ProPet 8-in-one Vitamin supplements without problems, but chronic, gradual poisoning is not something we’d necessarily see. As noted: it is a gamble. And one that no one in this country should have to take.

NOTE: you have permission to cross post this article. If you do so, please leave the article intact.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

Blind Dog Rescue Needs Your Stuff

Blind Dog Rescue Alliance, Inc. is having an eBay auction! We need money for vetwork. Adam, a pointer mix, our first foster, came into rescue with a bad upper respiratory virus, very bad ear infection in both ears, and lastly he was positive for Coccidia, whipworms and Lung Fluke. He has been to the vet a couple times already to monitor him. He's doing well, but vetwork was expensive. Buddy, a senior poodle we pulled from a shelter in NJ, also may have kennel cough.
We have a 10 week old puppy born without eyes coming in next week. We need to raise money to pay for their vetwork!

Please, if you have anything to donate, email You can either ship the item or send it to us to ship (though if you can ship, that'd be great) All items are welcome, not necessarily dog related items. Auction will start on September 6. Please crosspost widely, and thanks for your support.

BDRA, Inc. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to rescuing blind and visually impaired dogs.

Please contact Blind Dog Rescue directly as I am not involved in this project, merely cross-posting for the director.