Thursday, March 19, 2009


There's a classic bed- switching scene in "A Night at the Opera" in which Groucho and his friends wind up rushing between hotel bedrooms so frantically that everything eventually becomes a blur of slamming doors and bodies streaking down hallways. That scene is as good as any to explain how it has come to pass that thousands of pets have died, tens of thousand of pets are sick and dying, humans have been sickened, and every single stakeholder involved in the Open Secret behind all this, suddenly has no clue, no accountability, no responsibility, and are getting away with that.

We're all waiting for the other shoe to drop. I used to think Mackie's dry kibble, Bench and Field,would be next. Discovered it is manufactured by EAGLE PACK. When I called Bench and Field in March, and again in April , I did not get a full disclosure as to the name of their manufacturer. I got that from the Pet Food List.

The stories about how the pets died are painful to read, none of them deserved that. In many cases they ate JUST ONE CAN, JUST ONE BOWL of the food, and they were done for. The elderly and the young, it's beginning to sound like a Nazi WW2 experiment in depopulation.

I switched Mack in 2005 to Bench and Field kibble, as part of the 30% commercial in his diet. I had a few criteria: local grown, local tested, no wheat, no soy, no glutens ... I appreciate the full disclosure on their website, few other pet food branders have done this:

Eagle Pack Pet Foods, Inc. sources most of its approximately 100 ingredients domestically. However Duck Meal originates from Germany, Anchovy and Sardines Meals from Mexico, Salmon from the Pacific and Kelp from ocean waters off Nova Scotia. In our supplements, U.S. vitamin maker BASF sources some vitamins from China. Taurine and Glucosamine are also sourced from China by BASF. In most cases, human and pet food brands and supplements source these 3 items from China. Some pet food makers seem unaware of this. Again, know your sources, and we do. All meat meals are tested by NIR analysis to determine protein, fat, fiber and moisture levels. Grains, such as rice, corn and oatmeal, are tested for mycotoxins. We have good and trusting relationships with our suppliers.
Know your Sources - Know your Stakeholders. That's great advice, but end-to-end, those bastards at all the Pet Food Companies knew their stakeholders, including those abroad, and are playing the bed switching scene in "A Night at the Opera".

Like everyone else, I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop. I've been hit twice and I am careful. When it was only about the poisoned wheat gluten, why they knew about the RPC and wouldn't admit it, despite the news from South Africa (thank you howl911 and itchmo), I switched to Natural Balance, which claimed no wheat or corn or rice protein concentrate (RPC).

When Mack immediately started symptoms again, I communicated with Natural Balance and they lied to me. In writing, they said, we use no RPC and "our products were tested and came back OK." Had I believed them, Mack would be dead. But two bites were enough to set him back. Then Natural Balance said RPC had been added without permission. Whose permission? Whose due diligence? That's a child's excuse: "I didn't know because they didn't tell me. " It doesn't legally cut it in a regulated company making over $100 million a year.

Eagle Pack informs us:

Pet owners keep asking what food is next. To date the contaminated ingredient has been identified as Wheat Gluten and Rice Protein Concentrate/Rice Gluten. These are not in any Eagle Pack Dry or Canned foods, so pet owners can feel safe in feeding our foods for these and the following reasons:

  • We attended a seminar where an expert stated “You can’t test your way to ingredient safety, though you must test. The best way to assure yourself of ingredient safety is to know your suppliers.” We have been dealing with many of the same trusted suppliers for 35 years.

  • Testing is ongoing. We have an onsite laboratory and also use the industry’s leading laboratory.

  • Our formulas are fixed formulas using high quality ingredients.

I do like the manufacturer's attitude. But I am aware they are also Corporate America. We all are waiting for the other shoe to drop, and in the human food supply too. I spoke with Eagle Pack today and they confirmed most if not ALL HUMAN VITAMINS AND SUPPLEMENTS as well as pets' come through BASF, a massive German Chemical company, you know, the one which doesn't make things, but make things better... and most of their nutritional source products come from China.

The implications that all our nutritional supplements are being "made better" by a German Chemical company with zero transparency of such processes is too grim to think about.

Mackie isn't all switched over to home cooking, though we're both trying hard. He's only 80% home fed, and in his weakened condition, I don't want to take away his beloved kibble, which he eats only 1/2 cup over 2-3 days. I'm going at his pace, he's always steered me right on issues to do with him. I'm not saying he'll never get sick on home cooking, but if he does, it won't be from rat-poison, industrial-toxic-waste-sludge , or some latter-day FDA-blessed form of Zyklon-B.

I feel guilty, no matter the advice I offer others:
No matter what logic is offered, we always feel guilty because these animals are put in our total care. IMO there is nothing wrong in feeling terrible about selecting and feeding the bad food, that's just natural. You are making it constructive, reaching so many people with your sad story. I hope in time with the work you are doing, those feelings transform into perhaps seeing Kitty Boy - who came to this planet - and took "the hit" so another cat might live - if you didn't select that bag of poisoned food, someone else would have. Why you, why him? These are spiritual questions, clearly you and he are linked in some karmic way, for some reason all yours. This I know, you both are helping so many others.

I get to go back and hug my kitty who survived his bout with Science Diet that same week in Feb. But he suffered and I still keep saying I'm sorry, because he's been so weakened. He's scared of his wet food bowl. Every time I get onto howl911 for updates, my kitty knows, he gets very quiet and sad.