Until the recent Menu Foods recall of over 60 million cans and packages of pet food, Canadians were ignorant to the many dark secrets about our pet food industry. Since March 16, 2007, a host of other pet food manufacturers have joined in recalling their products when they discovered their wet or dry pet foods contained the contaminant melamine. Royal Canin has recently been called to task for overdosing our pets with Vitamin D. What will we trusting pet owners be poisoning our pets with next?

There is NO regulation over the manufacture and sale of pet food in Canada.

Canadians need to band together and stand firm in our demand that the pet food industry in Canada is regulated once and for all. We need to make sure not one more pet becomes ill or dies from tainted pet food. We need to know for certain the food we feed our pets lives up to the claims that its ingredients are as nutritionally balanced as the pet food companies say they are.

Now is the time for action. Please take a few minutes to send a letter to your local MP, and to the leaders of our country to let them know that Canadians are calling for the pet food industry to be regulated.

Sample letters are provided in the link to the right of the page, below the flag. Simply follow the link then save the file to your computer. Links are also provided with contact information for various elected officials. Feel free to personalize the sample letters or write your own. Send letters to as many people as possible. We need to get the word out there and let the government know that we mean business!

The moderators of this site – who we are:

Carol:After my cat was diagnosed with diabetes, I learned that the 'prescription' dry food I had been feeding him had likely caused the disease. I changed his diet and he is now nearly off insulin after a few short months. I have joined the campaign for pet food regulation because I believe that our precious pets should be provided with safe, high quality nutrition.

Linda: My cat became severely ill after eating one of the foods manufactured by Menu Foods. Fortunately, after four intensive days of care, my cat is now in good health. Thousands of others were not so lucky. I joined the campaign for pet food regulation because I want to make sure that pet owners and their beloved pets never have to go through this kind of crisis again.

Mel: Since having one of my cats diagnosed with diabetes and the other with inflammatory bowel disease in the past year, both which likely would have been preventable with proper diet, I have become passionate about feline nutrition and the need for regulation of the pet food industry.

In addition, there are many more working behind the scenes who are involved with doing research, providing information, campaigning and getting the word out there.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Link correction

From the post on the pet food forum; the link has been fixed. It was pointing to the wrong article.

The following is a link to a handout of Dr. Hodgkins' talk:Safe Pet Foods and Truthful Labels: Are They Possible? Elizabeth Hodgkins DVM, Esq.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Pet Nutrition Forum Friday May 18: Update

The Pet Nutrition Forum held Friday May 18th was a success. Community response was positive and a lot of useful information was presented. A follow-up forum will be held at a later date, to be determined, so watch here for information.

The following is a link to a handout of Dr. Hodgkins' talk:
Safe Pet Foods and Truthful Labels: Are They Possible?
Elizabeth Hodgkins DVM, Esq.

Also present at the meeting was one of the co-authors of the following article, Cory Haggart:
Pet Food & Nutrition: A Necessary Review For Veterinarians This article offers a Canadian perspective on the pet food industry and the current status of pet nutrition. It's a must-read for pet owners and vets alike.

Olivia Chow, MP, spoke about her Private Members Bill for regulation of the pet food industry in Canada. The bill is currently being drafted and more information will be provided here as it becomes available. In the meantime, she advised to continue writing to your elected representatives, the Minister of Agriculture, party leaders and opposition critics to let your feelings be known about the issue.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Can food safety be solved with testing?

Minister of Agriculture Chuck Strahl (among others) has stated that testing would not have detected the contaminants in the recalled foods. Itchmo.com has some interesting commentary on that thought, pasted below. Click here to go to the original blog post on Itchmo's site.

Can food safety be solved with testing?

Pet food companies have maintained that testing would not have caught melamine spiking since it was so unexpected. But two issues have raised doubts about just how much testing was done in the first place.

  1. Spiking food ingredients with fake-protein was so widespread, there were cases in the US as well as brazen requests for melamine scraps by food makers in China.
    The FDA said pet food makers
    received wheat flour, not wheat gluten. Two substances very different from each other.
  2. Melamine was visible in the tainted foods.
  3. Now, companies are beefing up their testing processes and offering new testing services. We don’t think that testing will catch every possible problem. We believe the industry must escape its “who can get to the bottom the fastest” mentality, and look to raise the bar by finding partners and suppliers they can trust, while giving consumers the most honest, accurate, and up-to-date information to make informed decisions.

Pet food okayed despite misgivings

An article appeared in the Vancouver Sun on Saturday May 12 reporting that Tri-Natural Products Inc. of Manotick, Ont, who has Canadian distribution rights for "gourmet" food produced by Fromm, has imported pet food from China. The food is slated to hit stores this summer.
"Despite serious misgivings about the credibility of China's veterinary system, Ottawa gave approval earlier this year to allow a Canadian company import "gourmet" pet food from two Chinese plants that produce food only for human consumption."

Click here to read the full article.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

The Great Pet Food Scandal

Maclean's magazine published a very interesting article this month "The Great Pet Food Scandal" "How one supplier caused a huge crisis, and why it's just the tip of the iceberg..." The article covers the history of Menu Foods and how it came to be such a huge influence in the pet food industry, talks about the problems with the current system in Canada, and tells the stories of some of the families affected.
"Sometime in the next couple of years, when the public gaze has drifted from the tainted pet food epidemic and we've all forgotten what melamine is, a judge in Ohio or California or Ontario will take up the daunting question of what a dog or cat is worth. There was considerable legal debate on this topic even before the current uproar. But if an animal's curative effect on the human heart plays any part in the calculation, the courts might start at a small house in Floral Park, N.Y., where the wounds wrought by the poisoning epidemic will stay raw for a long time to come...."

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Ontario MPP Rosario Marchese hosts Community Forum on Pet Nutrition

Rosario Marchese, Ontario MPP for Trinity-Spadina is hosting a Community Forum on Pet Nutrition.
Note: Seating is limited. Please call to register at 416-603-9664.

Date: Friday, May 18, 2007
Location: Cecil Street Community Centre, 58 Cecil St, Toronto(Cecil and Spadina, just south of College)
Time: 7:30 pm

Guest speakers include:

Dr. Elizabeth Hodgkins, DVM, ESQ.
Dr. Elizabeth Hodgkins has over 30 years of experience as a veterinarian. Her book, Your Cat: Simple Secrets to a Longer, Stronger Life takes on the pet food industry and advises pet owners how to provide safe pet nutrition. Dr. Hodgkins recently testified as an “expert witness” at the US Congressional Investigation into pet food in Washington, DC.

Olivia Chow, MP Trinity-Spadina
Olivia Chow will be discussing her proposed Private Members Bill on pet food regulation.

Click to view downloadable pdf of flyer here

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Keep those letters coming!! Some progress.

This out of the Canadian Press today:

"Strahl chomps down on pet food problem, launches regulatory review"

Global News Story

We have their attention, now we need to keep the pressure on. Keep writing letters and emails...the CFIA needs to know that this is an important issue to Canadians!