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Daily News Blog

Archive for the 'Pets' Category


28
Apr

Lawsuit Seeks to Protect Consumers from Toxic Pet Products

(Beyond Pesticides, April 28, 2009) On April 23, 2009, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) filed a lawsuit, NRDC v. Albertsons, Inc. et al, in California against major pet product retailers and manufacturers for illegally selling pet products containing a known cancer-causing chemical called propoxur without proper warning labels. In new scientific analysis also released the same day, NRDC found high levels of propoxur and tetrachlorvinphos (TCVP), another carcinogenic neurotoxin common in household pet products, on pet fur after use of ordinary flea collars. NRDC is also petitioning the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), calling for the removal of these chemicals from pet products. “Just because a product is sold in stores does not mean it is safe,” said Gina Solomon, MD, NRDC senior scientist and physician. “Under California law, consumers have a right to know if a flea control product exposes them to health risks before they buy it.” NRDC filed its lawsuit in California Superior Court in Alameda County against 16 retailers and manufacturers including Petsmart, PetCo, and Petstore.com, for failing to comply with California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act, known as Proposition 65, which prohibits businesses from knowingly exposing consumers without proper warning to any chemical […]

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02
Jan

Veterinarians Asked to Report Pesticide Poisoning Incidents

(Beyond Pesticides, January 2, 2009) Household pets and other animals are commonly exposed to toxic pesticides in lawns and parks, from homeowner use of bug sprays, in contaminated air or water, or from flea and tick control products, potentially poisoning the animal and causing acute and chronic health effects. A new website has been designed for veterinarians to help track these pesticide poisoning incidents. The incident reporting website is part of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) webpages. It was developed by the National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC) with input from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Pesticide Program, AVMA’s Clinical Practitioners Advisory Committee and Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents “to capture the optimal amount of relevant information using a form that is quick for busy practitioners to fill out.” The data is to be evaluated by EPA. According to EPA, “Most of the reports of more severe pesticide-related incidents EPA receives are neurological or dermatologic in nature. The reports from veterinarians will help improve the quality of all animal incident data.” Numerous studies have documented the risk of pesticides to pets over the years. A 1991 National Cancer Institute study, finds that dogs whose owners’ lawns were treated […]

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27
May

Pet Shampoos Containing Insecticides Linked to Autism

(Beyond Pesticides, May 27, 2008) A population-based study looking at how genes and environmental factors interact shows that pet shampoos containing insecticides may trigger autism spectrum disorders (ASD), reports New Scientist. The study findings, presented at the International Meeting for Autism Research, show that mothers of children with an ASD are twice as likely to have used an insecticidal pet shampoo during the prenatal and/or postnatal period when compared to mothers of healthy children. The strongest association was during the second trimester of pregnancy. According to the researchers, pet shampoos often contain pyrethrins and previous animal research has found that pyrethrins are designed to target the central nervous system in insects, rodents and other species and can cause death of neurons and compromise the blood-brain barrier in early life.Examining participants in the Childhood Autism Risks from Genetics and the Environment (CHARGE) study, researchers from the University of California, Davis looked at 333 children with ASD and 198 healthy children between the ages of two and five, and their families. In-depth questionnaires and blood and urine samples were collected. Isaac Pessah, Ph.D., a researcher involved in the study and professor in the Department of Molecular Biosciences, College of Veterinary Medicine at […]

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28
Mar

Rodenticide Found in Recalled Pet Food

(Beyond Pesticides, March 28, 2007) Menu Foods, which markets cat and dog food in the United States under 95 brand names, has recalled 60 million cans and pouches of wet pet food. The deaths of fifteen cats and one dog are being blamed on an analog of folic acid, aminopterin, which is used overseas as rat poison. In high doses, the rodenticide causes acute kidney failure, which has been named as the cause of death in an estimated sixteen pets (as reported by Menu Foods; the Food and Drug Administration lists 14 dead; in contrast, the Veterinary Information Network, a website with 30,000 members in the profession, reported 471 cases of kidney failure, including 104 deaths, since the recall). The drug’s history includes uses for cancer treatment and, at one point, inducing abortions. The compound is banned in the U.S. for pesticide use, but is still used to kill rodents in other countries. Among aminopterin’s side effects in humans are cancer and birth defects. On March 23, scientists at the New York State Food Laboratory confirmed aminopterin as the toxic chemical present in the Menu Food samples, at levels of at least 40 parts per million. Regulators suspect that the […]

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22
Mar

Rhode Island Beagle Club Fined for Deaths of Animals

(Beyond Pesticides, March 22, 2007) A federal magistrate judge in Providence, Rhode Island fined The Little Rhody Beagle Club Incorporated and its former president $28,144 for illegally using pesticides, guns and steel leg-hold traps to kill birds and other animals that were preying on the club’s stock of rabbits, which are used to train beagles. According to a report in the Providence Journal, the charges resulted from a joint investigation by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Environmental Police of the state Department of Environmental Management. Members of the dog club were chiefly targeting birds of prey, which they say ate the stocked rabbits. Most of the other, non-target birds, all of them quite common, died from insecticide poisoning. None of the birds the club killed are listed on an endangered species list. However, the birds are still protected, according to Tom Healy, a spokesman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. He explains that virtually all birds in North America, including the ubiquitous robin and the squawking crow, are migratory and fall under the protection of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. The club, which is located in Warwick, and its former president, William […]

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