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  1. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Toxic "Jerky Treats" for Pets

    Discussion in 'Debate Room' started by GingerCoffee, May 19, 2014.

    Why is this in the debate room, you might be asking? Skip to the last paragraph if you don't want to read all the backstory.

    I'm sensitive to the toxic pet food issue because the recall a few years back where the melamine in cat and dog food from China hit close to home. I wasn't worried since I bought Royal Canin, a supposedly better brand. Then I found out the 40 pound bag my two little dogs had just finished was on the recall list. The pet store I bought the last bag from (the recalled bag) only bothered to take recalled bags off the shelf and never attempted to warn pet owners who were feeding their pets the food from the last purchases.

    I was lucky the melamine was not as dangerous to dogs as it had been to cats, but I now make sure not to buy any pet food that has any ingredients that originate in China.

    A year or so ago there was a program on Canadian TV (we get 2 of their stations here) warning of pet deaths including dogs, from jerky treats also originating from China. They mentioned the FDA in the US had not yet acted. That especially irked me given we've seen this before.

    Then a few months ago I coincidentally got a call from the CDC doing research on the jerky treats. Mind boggling coincidence but it was a true random number call from their study. And I was aware the FDA still had not acted on warning pet owners about the jerky treats. So I answered all the questions, had I bought any of the jerky treats, had my dogs eaten any and were they healthy? No, no and yes. I had an interesting discussion with the researcher given I'd heard about the problem from a Canadian source.

    Finally there is a preliminary report on the study:
    FDA Provides Latest Information on Jerky Pet Treat Investigation

    The FDA is dragging its feet doing anything about the hazard because they haven't pinpointed the toxin or the specific brand.
    While I'm all for looking at evidence over non-systematically collected anecdotal reports, as a dog owner, I would prefer the warning and the choice not to buy the products. Pets don't need jerky treats. There are plenty of other options. And China isn't doing enough on their end to regulate and monitor their pet food manufacturing industry.

    If you're a Libertarian (I'm not) then the solution is boycott all jerky treats from China. I boycott all pet food with ingredients from China for now because the government won't properly inspect these products and assure they are safe. It's too bad if an innocent business is hurt. Better that than more innocent pets killed. If consumers don't buy these unsafe products, China will have to clean up its act.

    I would just like to see the FDA warn consumers about the potential risk until they prove the thousands of dead pets were not killed by the jerky treats, rather than waiting until the treats are proven dangerous.

    Which side should the FDA be erring on, the safety of the pets or the business interests of the manufacturers?
     
  2. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    Duchess-Yukine-Suoh Girl #21 Contributor

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    Actually, this is a complicated question. We don't want innocent pets to die, but on the other hand, the manufacturers are employing thousands. The rich isn't going to suffer, the menial job workers will. If they're laid off, the whole family is going to suffer, especially since they live in China and were probably making starvation wages to begin with. And the job market is extremely competitive these days, so they can't just go get another job. But we do have to protect the pets as well, because they're innocent little animals.
     
  3. Garball
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    Garball Sometimes nothing can be a real cool hand. Supporter Contributor

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    How about we have some sort of world police that prevents thus shit from leaving factories in the first place
     
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  4. Joshlyn
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    Joshlyn Member

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    We have 2 dogs and 2 cats, and a dog that passed away a year ago as of May 13.

    Ali died of heat exhaustion, or so we can only assume. We keep our dogs outside w/ PLENTY of water and ample shelter, lots of shade, and generally lots of room if they do want to be out in the sunshine. But Ali was a 12 year old Chocolate Lab, and she had severe arthritis, we live in Texas, and it was end of Spring/beginning of Summer, so it was pretty warm outside, but definitely not the worst it was going to get. But both Ali and Pete (or 4-5 *at the time* year old Border Collie) had been outside. They always get to come in at lunchtime when my parents are home for lunch from work, which is the same time since they work for the same university, and then they come in and stay in once my parents get home from work, they sleep inside. But w/ Ali's aging condition, we think she was just to the point she couldn't take the heat. But May 13, 2013, my parents came home from work at 5 pm, and they let Pete and Ali in, and they noticed Ali was breathing funny, and they tried to cool her off by hosing her down, but it kept getting worse, so they rushed her to the vet and they realized her lungs were filling w/ fluid and the vet just basically kept running out of time on options to help her, so my parents had to make a swift decision to end her suffering as quickly as possible. It was sudden, and surprising how much of a momma's girl she was to my mom, I took it harder than my mom, in fact I feel a wee bit like crying just telling the story.

    But now we have Pete who's about 6 at the moment, 7 in November, and we have RePete(my dad named them, and yes he did their names like that on purpose) who's about to be a year old, and he's a purebred (but unregistered, but worth a lot of money w/ his unique coloring along w/ the "honey" colored eyes) Australian Shepard. Oh and by the way, he's HUGE, he's almost a year, in July, and he's BIGGER than Pete!

    But we really only feed them milkbones, it's just what they like best. But now w/ all the commotion about pets dying from jerky treats from China, we're definitely watching what they eat. We've stuck to the same food they've always eaten(which I'm not sure what it is, while I consider them my dogs as well, I live 5 hours from my parents, and the animals).

    Now I will say for a while we were ordering BarkBox (https://www.barkbox.com) and I watched a little youtube "documentary" ish style video about a couple who had two dogs but they were like vegans and wanted their pets to have a very clean diet, so they started making vegan, homemade dog treats and they were picked up by BarkBox, and they're made in the US by this couple and the staff they've now had to hire to fulfill all their orders. But from what I understand BarkBox makes it a specific point to use the most natural, healthiest, cleanest dog treats. BarkBox comes in different sizes to accommodate different size dogs, and it also comes w/ a new toy every month, and just sort of things of that nature. Some samples of different stuff I think. I'd definitely recommend people looking into them. We were very happy w/ ours, but at the moment we can't afford it.

    But as far as if one of my dogs dying from a tainted treat, omg I'd lose my mind. Our Border Collie, Pete, I consider MY baby. Him and RePete are more of my dad's "dogs" if we had to pick a specific family member, but I consider Pete basically my "son." When I go on dates w/ guys I meet, sometimes I'll be like "Oh did I show you my son?" And they're like "omg I didn't know she had a kid." And then I show them a picture of Pete, and tell them how handsome and smart and superior to any other dog he is.
     
  5. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    That's sad about your dog, but it could also have been heart failure. A large dog that old would be elderly, and when the heart fails the lungs can fill with fluid. It happens with heat stroke as well but you never know.
     
  6. Joshlyn
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    Joshlyn Member

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    Yeah, either way it was best to let her go quickly than put her through the suffering of trying to extend her already ailing health. She had such bad arthritis she was taking a legitimate dose of hydrocodone.
     
  7. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    :friend:
     
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