Dr. Barbara Powers, immediate past president of the American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians (AAVLD) and director of Colorado State Universityâ€™s Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, recently spoke to ConsumerAffairs.com about the recent survey done by Michigan State University that was released by the AAVLD.
Major media outlets picked up the survey results and reported that only 226 pets were confirmed to have died from the pet food recalls.
Powers said, “But there absolutely could be more deaths from the tainted pet food. This survey didnâ€™t catch all the deaths that happened. In order to be counted in our survey, you had to meet certain criteria.â€
She stated, “If someone had a pet that died and they buried it in their background, they werenâ€™t eligible for our survey. We had to have confirmed exposure to the recalled pet food, proof of toxicity, and clinical signs of renal failure. So this is only a percentage of the deaths that are out there. Thereâ€™s no way to guess how many pets were affected.â€
â€œItâ€™s hard to prevent something like this from happening again,â€ Powers said. â€œIâ€™m sure there are now safeguards in place, but you canâ€™t check for every toxin under sun. And who would have ever thought to screen for melamine and cyanuric acid. Those were chemicals that werenâ€™t on anyoneâ€™s radar.â€