Toxin tests performed on Innova dog food (by an Itchmo member) got more attention today when the CEO of Natura, Peter Atkins, posted their test results. Natura owns the Innova brand.
On Jun 4, 2007, Donna (Itchmo username PFR07PS) received test results on her sample of Innova dog food from ExperTox stating that it tested positive for acetaminophen and cyanuric acid. She was prompted to test for toxins after spotting black and white chunks in the Innova kibble.
She paid for two tests. The first, performed on the dog kibble itself, tested negative for toxins. However, the second test, performed on just the black and white specks in the dog food (shown in photo) tested positive for cyanuric acid and acetaminophen.
Natura’s CEO said that the specks in the dog food are vitamin mineral premixes that did not dissolve during the manufacturing process — something Atkins said was “very uncommon”. He also added that the amounts of vitamins found in the kibble should not present any problems for pets.
The results found its way on to the ItchmoForums. Yesterday, the CEO of Natura responded in the thread with their test results — including a test of a similar batch of dog food from ExperTox. The sample of dog food sent in by Donna in May to Natura was not tested.
Samples of both the retained samples of the actual production run for Donnaâ€™s food (the retain sample is a composite of the entire production run and does include a representative sample of Donnaâ€™s food, including a sample taken directly in the middle of the two samples that she sent us - i.e. Donnaâ€™s samples were stamped 2019 and 2022; our retain is time stamped 2021) and the premix used in that production was sent to two different laboratories for testing. As expected, both tests have come back negative for acetaminophen contamination.
He also continued on to apologize to Natura’s customers via the post, however Donna says that she has yet to receive a call from Atkins.
Atkins said although Natura is continuing to use Menu Foods’ South Dakota plant for their wet foods, they are still committed to building or buying their own plant. He added that Natura no longer sources any ingredients from China.
Donna’s full email to us is below:
I have followed the pet food recall very closely, mostly because I want to protect my two dogs as best I can. I thought I was in as safe a position as I could be as we purchased what is commonly referred to as a â€œsuper premiumâ€ dog food.
On May 3, we purchased two bags of Innova adult dry dog food. We opened the first bag the following week and fed our dogs a couple of meals from that bag. When we prepared their next meal we were surprised to discover some large black and beige unknown objects actually embedded in the kibble. These chunks were very hard and varied in size; some protruded sharply from the kibble. We opened the second bag and found the same. We contacted the company to alert them to what we found and even offered pictures of the foreign objects. The rep told me they did not need to see the pictures, but a few days later told us we could submit a sample for analysis.
We decided to obtain a second analysis from AccuTrace in Arlington, TX. This analysis was done privately at our expense. A few days later the lab called with the results. First, the overall test of the kibble did not detect any of the known toxins (melamine, etc.). However, the analysis of the black and beige objects yielded the detection of acetaminophen and cyanuric acid. I cannot explain how shocked I was to hear the results. The analysis was done with the GC/MS technique.
The black and beige specks are actually embedded into the kibble. There is no possible way someone could insert these objects after the kibble was manufactured and packaged. We do not take acetaminophen nor do we have any in our house. We purchased the bags at the pet store, opened them in our home and we are the only persons who had access to the bags. Therefore, it is our conclusion that the objects were embedded in the kibble during the production process. The lab has also assured us of their confidence in the detection of the contaminants of acetaminophen and cyanuric acid. To date, I have not been advised of the results of the analysis from Natura Pet, makers of Innova.
We do not believe the dogs had enough of this food to make them sick. However, starting in January both dogs were sick over the course of two months. It was sporadic and hard to determine why they continued to have tummy aches, refuse their meals, vomit, appear very lethargic, and the female experienced terrible problems with incontinence. I placed repeated phone calls to the manufacturer to determine if there were formula or supplier changes that might have resulted in a change in the food that might have upset their stomachs. I was repeatedly told, â€œno changes.â€ The only common denominator for their illnesses was the dog food. Unfortunately, I have none of that food to test.
I share this information to encourage others to be suspect of any and all pet foods. Do not ignore what your pet is trying to tell you. If they do not want to eat the food, there is a reason. If they show unusual symptoms or behavioral changes, check it out with your vet immediately. You must do your own research and testing to ensure the safety, health and well-being of your pet.