Expertox Finds Lead, Other Toxins In Wal-Mart Pet Toys

Green Monster Dog ToyExpertox, a Texas lab, has found elevated levels of lead, chromium, and cadmium in two Chinese-made pet toys sold at Wal-Mart. But two veterinarians said the levels found by the lab are not a health risk to cats and dogs.

The lab was hired by to test two dog toys and two cat toys for heavy metals and other toxins.

A dog chew toy, a green monster, tested positive for what the lab categorizes as high levels of lead and chromium. The lab detected lead levels of 907.4 micrograms per kilogram (almost one part per million). Chromium was found at levels of 334.9 micrograms per kilogram. Levels of cadmium, arsenic and mercury were also found in the green monster toy.

The lab said with that kind of concentration, if a dog puts the toy in his mouth and chews or licks it, he is being exposed to a good amount of lead and runs the risk of metal toxicity that may shorten his life.

Expertox said a cloth catnip toy also tested positive for a “tremendous amount” of the toxic metal cadmium. The levels of cadmium found were 236 micrograms per kilogram.

Two other Wal-Mart pet toys were analyzed, a cloth hedgehog for dogs and a plastic dumbbell toy for cats. Expertox found cadmium in those two pet toys, but the lab toxicologist said the levels found were similar to the amount in one cigarette and not considered significant.

The director of Expertox’s lab, forensic toxicologist Dr. Ernest Lykissa, Ph.D., said the levels found in the green monster and catnip toys are potentially toxic. He said Wal-Mart should take these products off of the shelves or put a warning label on the toys saying that they are poisonous.

He added that lead goes to the brain and causes learning disorders in children, and chromium is a cancer producing agent.

Lykissa is worried about the high levels of metals and toxins the lab found in the pet toys.

“These (toxic) materials came off the toys freely, like with the lick of the tongue from a dog or cat,” he said. “They were readily liberated from these toys. We didn’t take a sledge hammer and pound on them. I just did what a dog or cat would do by licking it. That’s why this is so serious.”

Lykissa added that they didn’t dissolve the toys, but instead the metals and toxins were coming off of the toys. He stated: “Somebody’s saliva or the sweat in their hands would freely pick up these materials. And that’s absorbing it. If you ate the materials, like a dog might, it would be worse.”

But two veterinarians who saw the lab’s test results disagree. They said the levels of lead and other toxins found in the pet toys should not raise a toxicity concern for dogs and cats.

Dr. Mike Murphy of the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine, who holds a Ph.D. in toxicology, said: “Latex paint can contain one-half to one percent of lead, which is 10,000 parts per million. What he (Dr. Lykissa) is saying is that one part per million is a risk. But latex paint is 10,000 times higher than that and we don’t recognize latex paint as a toxicity risk to dogs and cats. I consider these to be extremely low numbers and they are not a toxicological concern for pet owners.”

Dr. Fred Oehme from Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine said the toxicity risks to pets from the toys depend on how much is absorbed in their bodies. He said most animals require 30 parts per million of their total daily diet before it results into a problem with lead.

He added: “I think they’re a potential hazard – just like a car can be a potential hazard. The hazard in this case implies how the compound is being used and its availability. I’m more concerned about the lead than the other two (heavy metals). Lead accumulates and if it gets into the body, it builds up.”

Wal-Mart did not respond to when they contacted the company about Expertox’s findings.


(Thanks Jonathan, The Writing On The Wal)

60 Responses to “Expertox Finds Lead, Other Toxins In Wal-Mart Pet Toys”

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  1. Fearlessfox says:

    I think Sphinxkitty has it right! The Chinese are responsible for almost all of our vitamins, garlic, and other foods/health products, along with our pet and children product imports and what better way to anhilate an old enemy?! I have always thought they have been doing these things on purpose and with malice and each recall or finding only serves to convince me even more.
    When will our government start protecting us and STOP TRADING with THE ENEMY? Do they even care?

  2. Pet Industry Responds To Lab Finding Lead, Other Toxins In Wal-Mart Pet Toys | Itchmo: News For Dogs & Cats says:

    […] digest or subscribe in a RSS reader.After reported that Expertox, a Texas lab, found elevated levels of lead, cadmium, and chromium in two Wal-Mart pet toys, the pet industry said they are taking notice and […]

  3. Words of a Witchy Woman»Blog Archive » Another Lead Alert says:

    […] you have dogs or cats & buy their toys at W@lmart, you need to read this article: News for cats and dogs - Expertox Finds Lead, Other Toxins In Wal-Mart Pet Toys. I think I’m just going to have to start making toys and treats for my pets, its getting […]

  4. Pet Owner Tests 24 Chinese-Made Dog Toys For Lead | Itchmo: News For Dogs & Cats says:

    […] But the lead levels found in the PetSmart tennis ball are 335 times higher than the amount Expertox, a Texas, lab found in one of the Wal-Mart pet toys they tested. […]

  5. ABC.. says:

    Maybe we should start blaming companies that designed these products, not the people that are making these for them? The Chinese factories are only doing what they’re told to do. They’re given directions, and they manufacture.

  6. e schlichter says:

    NOW WHAT??????????????????????
    NOW THE TOYS ARE TOXIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    THIS HAS GOT TO STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. john suter says:

    P. O. Box 670144
    Chugiak, AK 99567-0144
    (907) 688-3103

    January 4, 2008


    It has been in the news showing persistent problem of importing unsafe and toxic goods from China to America. The CPSC has been unable to get on top of this problem, because they say they don’t have the resources to do the job. I recently heard a news broad cast pointing out that America will have this problem for years to come.

    The news story said that Japan does not have this problem and will never have it. Japan sends over inspectors to see to it that unsafe and toxic products are not shipped to Japan in the first place. Japan has a list of products that have passed inspection and a list of products that have not pass inspection.

    What the US of A should do is get a copy of the list of products that Japan has screened and follow it as they do. Then the problem of shipping in unsafe and toxic products will come to a halt. As Japan does not have this import problem of products from any country, nether will the US of A.

    I am sure that Japan would be willing to give a copy of their safe product list to the US of A for free. I hope you get a copy of this safe product list and give it to the CPSC for them to use in their screening of products that are shipped to America.


    John Suter

  8. Will Dogs Boycott Beijing? « Smartdogs’ Weblog says:

    […] have been several cases of paint containing toxic levels of lead, cadmium and other heavy metals used on millions of toys made in China for the world’s children and dogs.   The Chinese government has admitted […]

  9. chromium metal says:

    […] of concentration, if a dog puts the toy in his mouth and chews or licks it, he is being exposed to a Definition and Much More from Answers.comchromium n. Symbol Cr A lustrous, hard, […]

  10. johnypaycut says:

    Well someone better tell the chinese (gooks),or the corporations(lackys)responsible that this had to end,yesterday(2007?)im just looking forward
    to writting my senator/congressman, and asking why this hasn’t ended.
    don’t be fooled, patience is not a sign of unwillingness to act.
    it was a opportuntiy to change what was not right. refusal to do so implies a lack of good faith?

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