09162014Headline:

Providence, Rhode Island

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Shannon Weidemann
Shannon Weidemann
Contributor •

Rat Poison Found in Recalled Pet Food

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The nationwide recall of Menu Foods dog and cat food received one answer this week. Rat poison was found in the food and explains why pets that have eaten it are suffering from kidney failure. It is not known how the rat poison got into the food. The recall covers over 90 brands of canned and foil pouch dog and cat food.

Last weekend, Menu Foods recalled 90 brands of dog and cat food it manufactures after scores of animals became sick. The international recall covered about 60 million packages of “cuts and gravy” style pet food that were sold in cans and pouches.

Days before the company announced the recall on March 17, Menu Foods contracted with toxicologists at the state Animal Health Diagnostic Center at Cornell University to try to identify what was causing kidney failure in dogs and cats that had eaten the food in a taste study. When Cornell failed to find a cause, it called in the state Food Laboratory, which identified the poison Thursday night.

“As for the disease in cats, it makes sense that this would be responsible for what we have seen,” said Dr. Dan Rice, director of the laboratory.

The FDA reports that 15 animals have died so far, but people fear the number could go into the thousands. If you believe that your pet ate the recalled food, you should contact your veterinarian and discuss with them whether or not your animal should be tested.