Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Reports of Illness/Deaths suspected from Non-Recalled Hill's Science Diet foods

I've put the Hill's Prescription and Hill's Science Diet information into this separate post, as we now have THREE different foods from this company that tested postive for toxins in private tests. See items in red below.

Science Diet Light Canned Dog Food - Cyanuric Acid (details here and here)
Science Diet Light Dry Cat Food - Cyanuric Acid and Acetaminophen (details here and here)
Science Diet Sensitive Stomach Dry Cat Food - Acetaminophen
(details here and here)

I have seen hundreds of reports of pets who got sick or died - from eating (mostly dry) food that has not been recalled - posted on various sites online. Many of us have been told by FDA officials that they have also received numerous reports of other unrecalled foods causing illness. However, the foods which people keep complaining about have not been recalled. So I'll be doing what I can to 'shine a light' on these reports and complaints, in the fervent hope that as more people become aware of the problem it will be addressed.

These foods need to be thoroughly tested for all possible contaminants (Melamine and the Melamine Compounds including Cyanuric Acid, as well as excess Vitamin D, Aflatoxin, Aminopterin and Acetominophen) - and the results must be made public.

Recently, there was an article about Nutro dry foods (see here), and an entry about Iams (see here). Other brands are here. Reports/comments for those brands are listed in those posts.

This post is for Hill's Prescription and Science Diet foods that people have been reporting. I've been reading these online for many weeks now, and since it seems like many people only look on one or two sites for their information, I'm posting them here to increase awareness, and so that the full scope of the issue is understood better. There are foods out there that still need to be recalled!

These are just a few of the comments that other people have posted online, on other websites, forums and blogs. I am providing links to them so you can check them out for yourself. In most cases I have posted a portion of the comment and you can click the link to read the rest. I've tried to include links from different sites - in most cases there are multiple stories on the same site.

Note that I've left the Quote Marks off to make it easier to read. Everything under a link is from the original poster. Where there is a '...' it means I've edited some of the post. Again, click the links to see the full post.

Disclaimer: These are reports by people like yourself who posted online (or emailed me) that they believe a certain food made their pets sick. This information is simply for you to use as part of making an educated difference about what products you purchase - both for yourself and your pet. None of these foods have been recalled, and the problems reported may have nothing to do with the current round of recalls! If your pet has eaten any of these foods and got sick, please report it to the company and FDA! Some people have been told that the FDA will only test additional foods when they receive enough complaints about it. So if you have a complaint, please contact your local FDA office. http://www.fda.gov/opacom/backgrounders/complain.html

And please, feel free to add your own story in the comment section, or email me with it. (I still have a bunch of emails to work my way through, so it might take me a while to respond but I will get back to you.)

I will post any additional private test results of these foods if/when they become available.

Hill’s Prescription dry c/d Dry Cat Food
http://www.petconnection.com/blog/2007/04/03/pet-food-recall-we-read-the-news-today-oh-boy/#comment-22678Our cat died after eating Hill’s Prescription dry c/d which contains corn gluten

I also have a cat who went into unexplained acute renal failure in February, on a diet of dry Hill’s C/D (she was healthy and ate the C/D only because it was prescribed for her brother and two vets assured me that it was fine for her also. ...

Hills Prescription s/d Cat Food
My cat died and I’m sure it was due to Prescription Diet S/D. This product has not be recalled but ... had all the symptoms - jaundiced gums, vomiting, fatigue, frequent urination, extreme thirst. The vet had no idea what was wrong as this all occurred on March 12th, before we really knew about the problems with food. ...

Hill's Prescription z/d Cat Food
I had 3 cats die between last year and just before the recall. I think Hills Z/D is what killed them. Some of my cats wouldn’t touch it. some ate it.

Hill's Prescription i/d Cat Food (added 6-9 1pm, brought up from the comments on previous post)
My cat was eating Prescription Diet i/d exclusively and when I opened and started a new bag of it in late March, he became sick. He died on April 02,2007 and I am absolutely positive that the Prescription i/d killed him -- it contains "corn gluten". He was poisioned to death!!!!!

Hills Prescription Diet ID Dry Dog
My schnauzer and westie have been sick every time I bring home a bag of dry Science Diet ID from the vet sinece last June. ... It was particularly bad in November thru January requiring a couple of emergency room visits as well as sub-q fluids and and shots for nausea and vomiting. Vet thought my schnauzer had Pancreatitis. She does have a very sensitive stomach and is prone to GI bleed if her diet is not maintained, but the episides almost monthly came after each new bag was opened for her and my westie. .... I have mentioned it to my vet repeatedly. all he says is to phone Hill’s. Did that too. All they did was send me a five dollar coupon toward my next purchase.

Science Diet Indoor Dry Cat Food
We lost our sweet 9 year-old cat last week of acute kidney failure. She ate dry food only ( science diet, indoor cat... ... She had never been sick before. Our nightmare included hospitalization, iv antibiotics and a week of home-administered ringer's lactate infusions, before she succumbed. ...

Science Diet Light Dry Cat Food
I put ...our twelve-year old black cat to sleep on Monday, March 19, 2007. He and another cat only ate Hills Science Diet light dry food. ... He had kidney failure and was severely dehydrated. ... I emailed Hills about my ...to have it on record. I have not received a returned phone call from the Texas FDA yet. ...

Science Diet Light Dry Cat Food (
Added 6-9)
This food tested positive for Cyanuric Acid and Acetaminophen after a sample from an open bag was sent to a private lab. See here for details

Science Diet Hairball Light Formula Dry Cat Food
My cat became extremely sick about three weeks ago. He stopped eating, but we thought it was because he was upset with our move...After a week I took him to the vet. He is only 6 and up to this point has always been in perfect health. He was suffering from severe Renal Failure. ... We had been feeding him Hill's Science Diet Hairball Light Formula...

Science Diet Sensitive Stomach Dry Cat Food (Added 6-9)
This food tested positive in private tests for acetaminophen. See here for details.

Science Diet Dry Dog Food
I have fed my dog Science Diet Dry Dog Food for 7 years. I bought a new bag at ... and when I opened the bag it had a strange smell and the food looked darker then usual. I gave it to my dog and she ate some and that night she started vomiting. She was sick for two days, and would not eat any more of the food.

I stopped feeding Science Diet Dry Food. Since I bought a bag Jan? Feb?my dog hasn’t wanted to eat it ,the few times he did he would lay spread out on his tummy as if he had a tummy ache.

Science Diet Light Canned Dog Food (added 6-12)
This food tested positive for Cyanuric Acid after an unopened can was sent to a private lab. Read more here.

Read more on Hill's here (including correspondence with other pet owners in the response section) Added 6-4 9am


Peggy said...

want to find more info on canine Hills prescription cd can food.

have seen too may pets get sick and pass on in the last year.

Unknown said...

Thanks for compiling all this information in one place. I was trying to persuade a friend with a sick cat (first one died of kidney failure before recalls) NOT to give her cat Hill's, as "prescribed" by her vet. This after the cat was in the hospital for a week already. I sent her this link, thinking I had failed, but she wrote me this morning that she threw away all the Hill's cat food.

TejasKat said...

Kim -

You have done a wonderful job with this *APPALLING* list!!

I've known all these were scattered across the web for months -- it's GREAT you are compiling!

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I just started reading your page and have almost fallen off my chair. Last month, our 7 year old incredibly healthy Golden Retriever died with 5 days after being diagnosed with total kidney failure. I contact Hill's because I had only just started her on 7+ Diet dry food when she started dramatically losing weight. The vet said it had to be the change in food. I am so devastated by this.

Anonymous said...

My cat was on Hill's D/d (venison and pea) and got very sick on it. An otherwise active cat became extremely lethargic and stopped eating, and was getting progressively worse. He was acting so wierd and the only thing blood tests revealed was increased calcium level. (vitamin d poisoning?). Nothing else showed but my vet could not explain why my kitty was so sick - because his symptoms did not match the blood tests. He was switched to another company's food and within 2 weeks was back to normal. When blood tests were done 4 weeks later, everything was back to normal. I have no doubt that had he continued eating Hills he would not be here now.

Anonymous said...

So, with all these recalls - what pet foods (for dogs) do any of you recommend? This is just getting a little confusing and want to make sure I'm giving my dogs some good food!

Dr. D said...

I contacted Hill last spring when my 10 year old cat was diagnosed with renal failure. He declined rapidly and died approximately 2 months after the melamine contamination of several pet food products was first disclosed to the public. Hill responded to my inquiry by sending a form letter. I am writing now because another of my cats was diagnosed today with renal failure. He is a year younger than the first cat was at the time of his death; the two cats share no parentage, so genetic factors can't explain this. All of my cats have eaten nothing but Science Diet Feline Maintenance their entire lives. Although this dry food was never placed on a recall list, I find it very difficult to believe that second occurrence is coincidental. My heart is breaking again at the prospect of seeing a second cat suffer and die as toxins accumulate in his bloodstream. I am now extremely concerned that my third cat, who was 4 years old at the time of the recall will suffer the same horrible fate. These cats have never been allowed outside my home and have no contact with any toxins that are known to cause renal failure. Since my Internet search for lists of recalled pet foods last May, I now note a later CNN article reporting that Science Diet c/d food was later placed on the recall list, despite Hill's assurances that none of its dry food products were contaminated. Now that I have found this Web site, I am convinced that Hill's Science Diet Feline Maintenance dry cat food is responsible for my cats' renal failure.

Anonymous said...

I have taken care of a colony of stray and feral cats for the past 14 years. In the first few years, I was feeding them Science Diet kibble until someone told me about the Ethoxyquin in it, and I stopped. All but one of the cats who ate the SD kibble back then developed intestinal lymphoma. All the cats who came after I stopped feeding the SD have remained healthy.

Anonymous said...

Our vet recommended Hills ID for our Vizsla after he experienced pancreatitis. While on Hills ID dry food, our dog lost all his energy and personality. We transferred our dog to different food when we noticed that our last bag of Hills ID went rancid within three weeks, even though it was stored in an air tight container. Our dog was back to himself within one week after switching to different food.

Anonymous said...

What Cat food would you recommend ? What are the Top Cat food brands ?

Anonymous said...

Could anyone point me to someone who might be able to test my Hills Prescription feline Cd dry food. I've kept it for testing after removing my cats from it. After four years of eating it with no issues, suddenly one cat became quite ill and all three began vomiting and then refused to eat anymore of it. I switched to some recommended 'natural food (testing evo, innova, etc.) and the very sick cat became well, the other two went back to eating again.

Anonymous said...

I came across this site looking for coupons as I just bought a 40 lb bag of Perscription Hill's Canine ID dry. My german shepherd was having constant diarhea and very thin when I got her and so I took her to the vet who suggested this food. After only a couple days her stool was normal and she was feeling better. I owe a lot to this food and cannot understand how some dogs are getting so sick from it?

Susan said...

My 7 year old dog was on Hill's canned s/d dog food for two weeks. The vet had perscribed Hill's to dissolve some stones she was developing in her bladder. The fat content of this food is on the high side. I didn't know at the time that I started her on it that it could cause pancreatitis. Although it is rare to develop this, she did. And although most dogs recover from pancreatitis, mine did not. Jess started showing signs that something was wrong on 2/5/09. She couldn't keep anything down, food, water, even snow. We took her to the vet right away, and tests were done to find out if she had pancreatitis. The vet told me she suspected Hill's was the culprit. My poor dog suffered immense pain, and swelling over the last three days of her life. She was put in the hospital, and we racked up a bill close to $2,400.00 only to lose her on 2/8/09. This was a dog who on Wednesday was running around in the snow like a crazy kid having fun on my kids day off of school. It can happen that fast. If your dog has stones, please talk to your vet about other methods of getting rid of those stones. Don't use Hill's. I am sure it killed our beautiful cockerpoo, Jessie.

Anonymous said...

I had such a sad week dealing with my dog Jessie's death and having a sick child for that same week that I completely screwed up the dates on my post just above this. Jessie was diagnosed on 1/30/09 and died on 2/1/09. Not that anyone will even notice this, but I wanted it right for Jess.

Kim said...


I'm sooo sorry about Jessie. Please know that your angel-in-fur will be waiting for you and you will be together again.

I know that doesn't help much now, but maybe someday it will bring you some comfort.



Anonymous said...

Iam so sad about the lost of all pets from this food and i am thankful that you all have shared your stories my westie recently had bladder stone removal surgery and hill science diet c/d was reccommended by the vet for her to eat for the rest of her life he said and for some reason i refused to buy it i had never heard about the effects of it but i just would not buy it maybe because i was thinking he pressed to hard for me to buy it but now that iknow how dangerous it is i am looking for recipes so i can make her food myself

Heather said...

My cat has been on Hills c/d for almost 5 years without incident - even though there were problems in the past, my cat seemed to miss that. Today she died, I believe because the vet ran out of the c/d formula and told me to substitute the s/d formula 3 days ago. My cat stopped eating became lethargic and dehydrated and seemed to start having kitty strokes or some paralysis. Vet tells me not the food - but I know my cat. How do I find out more about who else might have recent incidents with Hills?

J. Cords said...

I have two terriers, both on Hill's Prescription W/D diet. Both have been sick for a long time and kept getting worse and I had a fear they were dying. I spent thousands on testing for these dogs with no diagnosis.

Because they both had the same symptoms and their diet was all they had in common I stopped all the food veterinary prescribed and cook all their food. Chicken and rice with additive to balance the diet. In a short time they dramatically improved and continue to do so. They are now much healthier (1 month) very active and playful. No vomiting or other problems. IT WAS ALL THE DIET CAUSING THE PROBLEMS. Janice Cordeiro jcordeiro1@comcast.net

Unknown said...

I have lost three cats to the same type of decline, all related to their kidneys, all were under 12 years old. I was a faithful Iams customer until the last kitty passed . I switched to Royal Canin, because that's what my vet sells. Does anyone know if that brand is ok?

J. Cords said...

From what I see on the internet I wouldn't trust any of the food available for pets. Mine are finally doing well on home cooked balanced diet. I no longer trust any of it.

sjgennoe said...

Janice-I was reading about your dogs being on W/D and it concerned me greatly as my beagle/lab mix just started eating W/D Dry and canned as part of her new diet due to a recent diabetes diagnosis. Can you tell me how long your dogs were eating W/D when you saw problems? Thank you-Susan

Anonymous said...

Good dispatch and this post helped me alot in my college assignement. Thank you on your information.

auction fantasy football said...

This is ridiculous!

Hannah said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your loss. In future, if my pet is not responding well to dry cat foods, I will do my best to cook food for them instead, even though it is less convenient.

Heather said...

I havve a 4 year old Golden Retiever that has been sick for 1 week.He has been eating Hills prescriptive diet I hope he will be ok

Anonymous said...

My dog Max was on Science Diet his whole life. About 3 years after we had h he got very sick and I spent 1500.00 having one of his kidneys taken out. After about ayear tbe other kidney started failing and he had to be put to sleep. BTY, I now have a Yorkie who is 11, had her on Eukanuba her whole life until about 2 months ago when the vet told my mom to put her on Hills Science Diet. Now her skin and hair look horrible. I am taking the ScienceDiet back tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

My 11yr old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel had been suffering from water infections for a couple of months. All possible tests had been done showing everything was fine but there were acid crystals in her Urine and Hill UT diet was prescibed for 7 days to sterilise her bladder. Unfortunately, after on day 5 she collapsed with GDV (bloat). She died within 2 hours. The xray showed that her stomach was full of undigested food and the emergency Vet believed it was as a result of the food and its high fat content. It was devasting and a complete shock for us all. We were robbed of a healthy happy sweet natured dog all because we thought we were helping her to get better. How wrong we were.I will be contacting Hills as well.

Unknown said...

I just lost my cat (female 10 year old) she was eating cd and wd hills food for most of her life. her two brothers were prescibed cd hills food to prevent stones, so i was feeding then a mix of cd and wd hills food. the vet told me it was ok for her to eat the cd food.she was diagnose with intestinal cancer. she was always an indoor cat, and she only ate dry food. the vet had no answer why this happen but after reading all the commnents i suspect this cd hills food made her sick.

Wanda Stanley said...

I feed my Cavalier King Charles Id gastrointestinal after bouts with several trials of sensitive stomach brands.. Everything I have tried other than id has left her with bloody diarrhea, and vomiting yellow bile.. She does not like the canned food, but eats the dry just fine.. I find that you just have to try brands until you find the right one for your dog. All brands have issues at times, and sadly, you don't know how your pet will react until you try it.. Unless we cook our dog's meals ourselves, we are at the mercy of packaged pet foods, My little girl has not been sick since starting the Hills ID formula. She has been on this food for 3 months now with no more stomach issues.. I am sad for the pets that had horrible reactions to this food.. She is gaining weight and has lots of energy..

Wanda Stanley said...

I feed my Cavalier King Charles Id gastrointestinal after bouts with several trials of sensitive stomach brands.. Everything I have tried other than id has left her with bloody diarrhea, and vomiting yellow bile.. She does not like the canned food, but eats the dry just fine.. I find that you just have to try brands until you find the right one for your dog. All brands have issues at times, and sadly, you don't know how your pet will react until you try it.. Unless we cook our dog's meals ourselves, we are at the mercy of packaged pet foods, My little girl has not been sick since starting the Hills ID formula. She has been on this food for 3 months now with no more stomach issues.. I am sad for the pets that had horrible reactions to this food.. She is gaining weight and has lots of energy..

Unknown said...

We had a dear and precious dog to die suddenly after being on the hills rd formula she started having breathing difficulty and bleeding from her mouth and nose she died before we could get her to the vet. She was like our child for 10 years and dearly loved I wish that we had never listened to our vet and hadn't fed her this food she might still be with us we are just heartbroken

Jennifer said...

I am trying so hard to forgive myself. I gave my 2 loves of my lives Prescription ID dry feline in 2007 on and kill both of my babies but not first without putting them through needles and saline bags and meds and pain. I cannot forgive myself finding out after the fact. The pain we went through for 2 years.

Unknown said...

My cat, Max, was very intelligent. He was the most affectionate cat you could meet.
He was a seal point Siamese. He had enough personality for 10 cats! He was diagnosed with kidney disease
in fall of 1999. The vet recommended Science Diet for cats. He was fine until early March of 2005. He started
throwing ball shaped vomit. He wouldn't eat. He wouldn't try to get out the door to my apartment, which he
did every day. He was lethargic.

I took him to the vet. He said it wasn't the food, which I should have suspected right away, but I'd had no
experience with poisoned food - until then.

I spent a lot of money, but had to have my lovely Max put to sleep on April 25, 2005.
This day will be one of the worst days of my life for as long as I live.
He had just turned 10 years old on Mach 17, 2005.

He was the greatest cat whom I was fortunate enough to have had as a friend.

My other two cats, Rachel and Samantha came down with similar symptoms a week later.

I finally realized. It was the food! I switched them to another dry cat food.
They both improved right away, and lived for many years after that.

But I gave Max the food that killed him. This still hurts, and it's almost 13 years later.
I have never, and will never feed any cat of mine Science Diet.

Volunteers Needed! Get food off shelves...

howl911.com, itchmo.com, thepetfoodlist.com, petconnection.com, petfoodtracker.com and spockosbrain.com have joined together to ask for your help.
Update 6-10: Recalled food was purchased from a
California store on 5-29th – this stuff is still out there!
We need Volunteers to help get recalled food off store shelves. Read this post at Spocko’s Brain for instructions. Print a list (or two) on this site. Visit stores, then report safe stores here at Itchmo.com.

Printing Information:
1. Print the main FDA Pet Food Recall page http://www.fda.gov/oc/opacom/hottopics/petfood.html – this will be handy to show retailers who haven’t heard anything about the recall. (3 pages)

2. Print the list of 14 Major National Brands - it includes flavors and date information where applicable so you can tell if specific products for these brands have been recalled. The brands are: Alpo Prime Cuts, Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul, Doctors Foster and Smith, Eukanuba, Gravy Train, Hill’s Science Diet, Iams, Jerky Treats, Lick Your Chops, Mighty Dog Pouches, Natural Balance, Nutro, Pounce, Royal Canin. (It’s 7 pages and includes FDA contact information.)

3. Print the List of All Brands – it will remind you what products have been recalled - but it does not give you date and flavor information, there is just too much to put in one document. (7 pages, but the 7th page is links to more detailed information so you don’t need to print it)

If you want, and are going to a store that you know has store brands that have been recalled (such as Walmart), go to that recall information at the links on the summary or at the FDA site and print it out. Some of the information is formatted in ways that make it difficult to read (one of the main reasons for this site), but it’s better than nothing.

Note: The FDA is the official source for all recall information and recalled products. This is an unofficial volunteer effort to help get the word out and get recalled foods off of shelves. We’re doing the best we can but can’t guarantee these lists are completely accurate. Again, here is the official recall site: http://www.fda.gov/oc/opacom/hottopics/petfood.html