Updated X 2: Grocery Store Notifies Consumers about Limited Iams Pet Food Recall

The grocery store chain Price Chopper has posted a recall of certain Iams dog and cat foods due to aflatoxin.  There is nothing on the Iams website about this recall.  I called Iams twice, trying to get a person or at least a recording clarifying anything about the recall but no luck.  I believe Iams is aware of the Price Chopper posting because when I called Price Chopper this morning, I was informed someone from Iams had called yesterday inquiring about the posting.  As far as why Iams would be aware of the recall notice but have nothing on their website or recorded phone info, I don’t know.

Screen capture of the recall notice posted at PriceChopper.com.

Aflatoxicosis in pets usually occurs when pets consume a  food product that was made with moldy corn (although the mold can grow on other grains and peanuts as well).  Liver disease and/or death may result.  There is no antidote.  Read more about aflatoxins and dogs here.

Update:  Price Chopper has pulled the recall notice from its website.  There is no explanation, just a 404.  I haven’t received any response to the online contact form I filled out at the Iams site.  Questions, questions.

Update #2, November 28:  I got tired of waiting for Iams to answer my online inquiry so I called them.  Paulette informed me that they have issued no recalls and will not be posting anything on their website about the lot numbers specified in the Price Chopper recall notice.  I said she was probably aware that many people were interested in getting clarification on this issue.  She said yes but they still weren’t going to address it.  She also said consumers can feed any of their foods with “complete confidence”.  So, everyone is feeling all confident-like, I assume?

Updated: Beagle Run – Volunteer Transport Legs

In exploring all options, I went ahead and put together a trip outline for transporting the bagel from Memphis to SC.  Each leg is no more than 2 hours one way (4 hours round trip).  I’ll be posting this in various places online and wanted to share it here as well.  Shooting for an early morning start either Saturday, December 3 or Sunday, December 4.  If you are in the area and would like to make an offer, please specify if both days work for you or if only one of the days would work for you.  Thanks!

Leg 1COVERED – Memphis, TN to Tupelo, MS:  Estimated one way driving time is 1 hour, 50 minutes

Leg 2COVERED for Sunday, December 4 – Tupelo, MS to Jasper, AL:  Estimated one way driving time is 1 hour, 35 minutes

Leg 3:  Jasper, AL to Oxford, AL :  Estimated one way driving time is 1 hour, 50 minutes

Leg 4:  Oxford, AL to Conyers, GA:  Estimated one way driving time is 2 hours

Leg 5:  Conyers, GA to Augusta, SC:  Estimated one way driving time is 1 hour 55 minutes

Leg 6:  Augusta, SC to my house:  Covered!

Protecting the Lives of Animals in Gaston Co

I truly sympathize with livestock owners whose animals are injured or killed by roaming dogs.  No one wants to see that happening and trapping the offending dog(s) is the right thing to do.  In that regard, authorities in Gaston Co, NC have taken appropriate action in this recent case:

Authorities believe they have captured the dog that has been attacking and killing barnyard animals on a farm between Gastonia and Cramerton.


Animal Control Sgt. Jim Phil said they set a trap baited with food on the property of a nearby landowner last week.

A dog was caught in the trap that same day and the livestock owner was brought in to see if the dog was a match for the one he’d seen attacking his animals.

“He said he was 95 percent sure that was the dog,” said Phil. “Hopefully we got it.”

This is the Gaston Co AC’s website posting for the trapped dog, who is noted as “shy” and listed as a Pitbull:

Click to enlarge.

I was unable to verify if the dog was killed on Wednesday as the pound is closed but unless an owner redeemed him, I assume that’s what happened.

Based on the history the dog is believed to have, it would not be eligible for rescue from the shelter, [Sgt. Phil] said.

“This would not be one we’d want to adopt out,” he said.

Why?  Gaston Co AC killed about half its pets last year, some by injection, others via the gas chamber.  While I can certainly understand not wanting to adopt the dog out to someone who would fail to keep him properly confined, why should AC make the assumption that every rescue group or adopter would fail this dog and put more livestock at risk?  To my mind, it’s an unreasonable assumption because clearly many rescue groups and adopters have demonstrated they can provide appropriate confinement for dogs.  Further, the faulty assumption results in the dog’s death.

AC has no way of knowing who might want to rescue or adopt this dog.  It might be someone who lives in a city without livestock and who intends to keep him fed, well cared for and appropriately confined.  Why deny the dog that opportunity?  Also, what if it was the wrong dog?  The dog in the photo doesn’t especially look like a Pitbull to me and the one eyewitness was not even 100% sure this was the same dog.

Sure, I know it’s possible no rescue or adopter who fit the desired specifications might have stepped up for this dog.  But if AC would have allowed the dog a chance to live, it’s possible that the right person might have applied.  With the dog going directly from his cage at AC to the landfill, we’ll never know.

In an interview with a researcher, a representative of Gaston Co AC made reference to the public’s increasing awareness and desire for no kill:

The interviewee notes the facility/animal services want to be on the “positive side” of the “changing paradigm of placement being preferable to euthanasia.”

Until we evolve beyond the-answer-to-killing-is-more-killing mentality, we can not expect to influence the pet owning public in the positive way in which shelters, including Gaston Co, say they desire.  In order to demonstrate that a shelter favors placing an animal over killing him, the pet must be offered for placement.  In failing to offer this dog for responsible placement with a screened rescue group or adopter, Gaston Co has demonstrated that it favors placement over killing only at times of convenience.  The county should expect to see the results of its failed leadership directly reflected in the local community’s attitude toward pets.  Local shelters can choose to lead by example or to fail by example.  In this case, Gaston Co made the wrong choice.



Beagle Run

I’m looking for suggestions and ideas on how to transport a formerly fat-bellied Beagle from the Memphis, TN area to anywhere near Columbia, SC.  The route goes through MS, AL and GA so possibly a rescue transport that had dogs to pick up at multiple shelters throughout the south before heading north could work – if such a transport exists.  The bagel has been out of the shelter for more than one month and will have a health certificate and vaccines prior to transport.

Click to enlarge.

Name That Animal

No researching, just have a guess.

You WILL accept my gift!

I’ve seen octopus-as-monster sci-fi flicks in which the star isn’t half as scary as this fellow.  Watch how he chases down the cameraman, intent on giving him a crab:

Treats on the Internets

The Humane Society of Richmond Co in Rockingham, NC had a kill rate of 74% last year.  The shelter recently announced it had not killed any healthy, adoptable pets in 30 days.

U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan sought comfort in the company of pets.  And they brought the love home with them.

An off-duty Port Authority cop was out walking his dog when a loose dog ran up to him.  He shot the loose dog to death.  NYPD did not charge the officer because “he was concerned for the safety of his own dog when he fired”.

UK singer-songwriter Maria Daines has posted a song for Ace, the Detroit Pitbull who was killed by animal control even though rescue groups wanted to save him.  (Thanks Morgana for the link.)

Eugene fire marshal says dogs are very useful in teaching kids about fire prevention.  She has a Dalmatian for the job.

A guy in South Africa who bragged about keeping a hippo as a pet has been killed by said hippo.

HUGE news for all of us coelacanth-o-philes:  a second, genetically distinct, breeding population has been discovered off the coast of Tanzania.


Open Thread

Pet related chit chat, links, and assorted colors.

Update on Donated Funds

Ona from Meows and BowWows went back to July 17, 2011 – the last update on the blog – to account for the expenses and donations we’ve had via the ChipIn.  She writes:

We had $1386.00 Chip In, $100.00 check received in mail, $150.00 direct to M & B Paypal.
Our only expense at the time: $67.00 for Jane
Balance: $1569.00

Since then we added $941.00 Chip in. Total received by Chip In: $2327.00

175.00 Henry, includes some boarding when we first pulled him
401.06 Two boxes of immiticide for Henry and Jane
126.85 Jane spay, tooth extraction
90.00 Henry & Jane injection of immiticide
100.00 Extra immiticide because Henry and Jane gained so much weight
100.00 Donation to Olympic Animal Sanctuary  [for assistance with Mario]
170.00 Donation to ARNO  [for assistance with Mario]
246.00 Went toward helping a Memphis resident get 2 of her pets spayed at Mid South Spay Neuter services.  Since we had some left over (the lady decided not to get her 3rd pet altered at this time), we donated the remainder toward Ranger’s neuter surgery.
Total expenses: 1408.91

That leaves a balance of 1101.09

– 40.99 Paypal fee on  1386.00
– 3.60   Paypal fee on 150.00
– 28.10 Paypal fee on 941.00
New Balance:  1028.40
Thank you Ona for keeping us updated with the accounting details (and I notice Ona hasn’t been reimbursing herself for expenses she’s incurred while helping the above dogs so thank you Ona for your financial contributions as well!).  Thanks to everyone who has donated.  It’s been great to have the money there when we’ve had the opportunity to save a pet from the stray area at MAS.  As Forrest Gump says, “One less thing.”

Sweet Jane has been treated for heartworms and is now ready to work on someone else's heart. She is available for foster/adoption through Meows and BowWows in Memphis.

Misty Water Colored Memories

On an audio tape of a recent staff meeting, MAS supervisor David Johnson is heard telling workers:

That old shit that we used to do is over with!  I tell you every day, CYA – cover your ass.

ABC24 ran a segment about the recording but I can’t find the clip on their website.  Here is an alternate source for the vid. (Thank you Clarice!AddedABC24 now has the clip on their site.  (Thanks Samantha.)

Am I the only one who hears Mr. Johnson reminiscing about days gone by and gets Barbra Streisand stuck in my head?