Woman’s Letter To Iams Results In A $2 Coupon

Judy Brendle believes that contaminated pet food killed her 13-year-old cat, Sushi. The cat stopped eating her wet food in February and was lethargic, and within a day, Sushi had died.

“About a week later, I saw the articles about the tainted pet food,” Brendle said. “So, I sent a letter to IAMS letting them know I thought they killed my cat and I would not be purchasing their product ever again.”

Monday, Brendle received a form letter and a $2 cat food coupon from the same pet food manufacturer.

“It was just so cold-hearted,” Brendle said. “They’re trying to make their mistake right with a coupon for the same food that killed Sushi.”

More on the letter from Iams after the jump.

From Norwichbulletin.com:

After months, Brendle struggled with Sushi’s death and the guilt that she felt. Earlier this month, her pain subsided enough that she brought another cat, Baruch, into her home.

And then on Monday, she received mail from the pet food company that she believed killed her cat Sushi.

Inside an envelope were two form letters, one from IAMS, the other from Proctor & Gamble dated June 14.

The IAMS letter thanks Brendle for bringing her concerns to the company’s attention and suggests she call the Consumer Relations Center for any further discussion.

The letter further states, “…we want to make this right with either a refund or product replacement.”

A coupon for $2 off any IAMS product was also included.

The P&G letter invites Brendle and her pet, “…to try IAMS!” and lists the benefits of the company’s product.

Brendle said attempted to contact IAMS via their hotline but was unable to connect with a representative.

IAMS could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

“I never wanted anything from IAMS,” Brendle said. “I just wanted them to know I had lost trust in them and that they broke my heart.”

Baruch, for the record, eats only dry food.

(Thanks menusux)

26 Responses to “Woman’s Letter To Iams Results In A $2 Coupon”

  1. Pit Bull Lover says:

    o. m. g.

  2. Gary says:

    Perhaps Judy Brendle should consider one of the many class actions going on.

  3. shibadiva says:

    I hope that broadcasting that story is going to prompt a lot of people to reconsider IAMS. Thank heaven for Itchmo, Pet Connection and the other pet sites on the web.

  4. elizabeth says:

    Many many companies have quality/competence problems in their customer service departments. This is an example. Often the letters are not even read, just put in piles. Of course, my email responses from my senators lately suggest they aren’t reading constituent mail either.

  5. bengals says:

    pathetic… sounds like when my family got food poisoning from a restaurant last November and they sent me a $30 gift certificate…as if I was ever going to eat there again.

  6. pat says:

    and thanks also to Mr. Penney of the Norwich Bulletin who saw the injustice of iams actions and wrote an article about it.

  7. Ruth says:

    I hope Baruch is not eating the IAM’s dry food.

    Brendle I am so sorry about your cat Sushi.

    As I have stated many times, I believe the dry dog food made my pet Marley sick and die.

    The times I have spoken with IAM’s, they just keep changing their stories on how their food is made and how closely its check. Only to be told that my pet dog had a genetic defect that caused her death. I don’t see how they could say that. They didn’t know my dog.

    Yeah, that was real cold to be told I had a genetic defect pet.

    As far as IAM’s is concerned they are done with the recalls. So if our pets died eating their product it wasn’t their fault. The don’t care how pet parents are left to grieve.

    I too, was offered a coupon, as if I would ever buy their food again. Well, guess thats how much our pets are worth to them, a lousy coupon.

  8. Katie says:

    Cold hearted and Pathetic. Iam’s doesn’t surprise me. I contacted them when I felt my dog was sick on their product. Story always changed and I got to people beyond customer service. Iam’s doesn’t care. Greed is what drives them.

    I hope the article written by Mr Penny is picked up by the national media - it’s about time the American public recognizes the cold heartedness of multi corporations and starts to think about how it effects them whether they are a pet household or not.

    Judy Bredelle I offer my condolences on the loss of your pet Sushi and your willingness to tell your story.


  9. pam says:

    i read somewhere that iam’s was losing market strength before the recall…probably because they changed the formula when they started selling it at supermarkets…and is doing much worse now. that’s why there’s all those $5 coupons in the newspapers. i would be so happy to see iams go under completely. the way they’ve handled this recall fiasco has been pathetic…iams has as much feeling as a rock in my garden, maybe less.

  10. mittens says:

    i had a little older cat emergency today-she stopped eating for 2 days and seemed dazed which sent me into a tizzy of fear.

    i get to the vet and the first thing i see are shelves packed to the gills with hills science diet.

    so nothing seems glaring obviously wrong from the physical exam( no throwing up, still drinking and peeing, stool in intestines so she was actually still eating when i wasn’t looking) so they do blood work etc. the doctor suggests a hills product to help her start eating or fancy feast and immediately i blurt out” No (expletive deleted) way is she getting anything from hills” . i explained she was to get nothing absolutely nothing made by menu foods and no grain products at all. she seemed a little horrified and was annoyed i was giving my cat people food and cat foods she had never heard of( artemis) because i may not be giving my cats the correct nutrition that only big companies that kill pets are capable of providing.

    i’ll take my chances, thank you. i’ve kept her alive for near 20 years-no thanks to crap junk food and grain filled cheapo diets for carnivors. she’d be better off eating things out of a garbage can than off most store shelves now a days.

    she seemed like a nice and competant enough vet but i annoyed her, i know, in defying the pet food factory propaganda. it made me rather sad and also annoyed-my cat had some symptoms of having eaten poisoned food and her first suggestion for feeding her is a company with recalled foods. i wish more vets were on our side. even the best intended seem nervous about the food thing-you can tell it makes them real uncomfortable. i just think it behooves them to do what’s in the pet’s best interest not in the giant company’s best interests. it makes dealing with the IAMS and Hill’s all the more difficult because doctors view those foods as premium and healthful and safe and it has yet to be proven that they are nor has what exactly went wrong been explained- a big problem.

  11. Ruth says:

    Mittens: Thats why I suspect that Hill’s and IAM’s won’t come clean about the dry food. They have to many Vet’s selling their crappy food.

    Vet’s are still buying into their nutritious double talk on how good the food is not to mention that Vets get a percentage for selling their garbage.

  12. HighNote says:


  13. catmom5 says:

    I can’t believe they even read the letter! It’s incomprehensible to me to think they understood that a pet had died as a result of their foods and then offered a coupon for the same foods? That’s crazy!!!


  14. Pukanuba says:

    I agree with all of you……Iams reaction doesn’t surprise me one bit. I have a feeling all the letters go into a pile, they remove the name & address, send a form letter & a coupon. You know why? Because they don’t care…..plain & simple.

    I can only hope that their uncaring attitude & their crappy food will sink them. I didn’t care for their food before all this & now any animal in my care will never eat any of their products (they are #1 on my list of never-to-buy products…..but there are many others). I want to read how their sales are down 75% & stocks are bottoming out…..oh yeah! If I see anyone buying any of these products, I try to talk them out of it telling them what I know about the food. I don’t care if they put sirloin steak in their products, I wouldn’t spend a dime on it.

    Note to all you big, uncaring PF companies: you may think you snuck out of this by doing silent recalls & managed to save your “good” name……as long as there is breath in me, I will tell anyone who will listen about all of you, what’s in your bags of waste & how much you really care about nutrition & the well-being of our pets. What rot…..

  15. Anon for this says:

    new t shirt



  16. Annabelle says:

    haha - that could catch on…

  17. elliott says:

    Mittens- I have been experiencing the same probs with vets and HILLS/PURINA Prescription junk. They seem oblivious to the recalls. When a pet has any probs , weight, skin etc. - “Let’s fix it with this prescription food because these companies know what they are doing.” First, let’s define “they know what they are doing.” Most of us here know more about pet nutrition than a lot of vets do, and we have learned it in the last 3 months. I have asked vets what a food should or should not contain that will help my pet’s health and they cannot answer what the magic ingredients are, or are not. Somehow, I do not feel bi-products, BHA or BHT are what are right. Apparently, HILLS thinks these are beneficial to my pet’s health.

  18. elliott says:

    I recently received a check from my vet in the amount of $421 and some odd cents. I was feeding HILLS SCIENCE DIET M/D that was recalled. I had SIX kitties tested that were eating this poison. FIVE were affected. HILLS offered $100 reimbursement per pet. I have never been good at math, but I still cannot wrap my head around the check received from my vet. Another case of defending HILLS by a vet. I was never consulted or agreed to this bogus amount , but due to the fact my vet filed this claim directly with HILLS, leads me to believe she feels $421 is all HILLS owes me. I should mention we had weekly vet bills of $900 at first, tapering off to $400-$500 since April. She still pushes HILLS to cure the ills HILLS created. VET FIRED!!!!

  19. carol says:

    This is another example of how we can not manage to educate the pet food industry, but we HAVE at least begun to educate ourselves. I hope the companies making a nutritious and safe product see their profits soar and their companies grow. This may be our best hope of putting the ones selling or manufacturing product containing toxins completely out of business.

    Judy, I am so sorry for your loss. Sushi deserved to live and enjoy her normal lifespan and not suffer from a food that was supposedly “premium.” I hope Sushi’s story will circulate until it hits National prime time news. Did you by any chance save the label from the food?

  20. Amy says:

    Okay, anyone remember the days when you had a legitimate issue with a product you could return it for a full refund? Stick with me here… it really wasn’t that long ago, I recall working part time at Sears in college and we always did exchanges for defective products, we accepted returns for long periods of time, and would sometimes even take back items that were obviously damaged by the customer just because they were making a big enough stink about it because, you know, the customer WAS always right. We knew if we took care of the customer we might keep the customer and generally the customers were not looking to take advantage of the situation. For the most part it was an even exchange.

    What happened to that? I hate to say it… I hate to blame it on Walmart again but I do blame them. I remember when WM first moved into my little midwestern hometown and it was big news that they would take any return. I mean ANY. You didn’t even need a receipt - just go to the customer service counter and they will give you money even if you didn’t buy the product there. Not sure if anyone else remembers this but it was an ongoing joke with my friends. Anyway, cut to 20+ years later and now you’re lucky if you can return an unused, unopened, defective product with a store receipt anywhere after about a week. Seriously. Target just changed to a 90 day return policy a couple years ago. Why? I think it’s because WM started their damn lenient return policy to get people in the door shopping. So customers started demanding the same treatment at other stores and since other stores weren’t prepared to handle the situation and didn’t want to lose business to WM they bowed to the demands. Over time all of these stores got tired of losing money on returns/exchanges/refunds, etc, so they stiffened their policy and started being rude to customers and the whole customer is always right idea went out the window.

    And now today they’re all so damn uncaring that we wind up with Iams sending a coupon for 2 bucks off the very food that killed a beloved family pet.

    That’s my theory. Oh that and Iams people are a bunch of asshats.

  21. gatorfan says:

    Three weeks ago I wrote Hill’s concerning acetaminophen in thier Science Diet for GI problem dry food. In my email I quoted sources. My response was “please call us to discuss your situation immediately”. My response was why call if you can not put in writing the fact that your product does not have acetaminophen. Following, FYI, is the response I got from Hills. Love the links to the FDA - like I will believe those imbecils. My secretary’s sister’s dog is on the particular poison Rx, dog is not doing well. I am trying my best to educate the family - just wanted to share an actual letter ( as full of crap as it may be) received from Hill’s with my itchmo family.

    Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Inc.

    Thank you for taking the time to send us your additional e-mail. I apologize
    for the delay in responding to you.

    Hill?s has full confidence in the safety of its products. We have been
    reviewing the unconfirmed report of acetaminophen in pet food samples, which
    referenced a number of pet food products from different manufacturers.

    Acetaminophen is not used in any Hill?s pet food products, which are produced
    in facilities devoted exclusively to pet food production.

    We have been in contact with the United States Food and Drug Administration
    about this report and are continuing to work to determine its validity. The Pet
    Food Institute (PFI), the industry association of pet food manufacturers, has a
    statement about this matter which may be of further interest. Phone or e-mail
    contact information is available on the PFI website www.petfoodinstitute.org.

    Please also see the FDA report on the website http://www.pittsburghlive.com/.....12295.html or I usually refer consumers to the FDA.gov website (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) for any findings that come about as a result of this blog news.

    If we can be of assistance in the future, please let us know.


    Jamie Slawson
    Consumer Affairs


  22. shelia says:

    I to have lost a cat (joey) from the pet food recall.I cryed for two weeks
    and still do .when i see a cat like him .they are not just pets they are our children too.the pet food companys need to stepup and take the blame.

  23. Pukanuba says:


    You may want to talk to a lawyer before you cash that check. I think once you sign & cash it, you are agreeing to taking that for full payment & you can never go after them again……I would wait to cash it unless you really need that money right now. Do a bit of research before you cash it.

    I think any PF company who pays is going to pay the very least amount they can get away with & hope they are done with you. I have no idea how people are going to do in a class action suit…..I’ve heard a lot of people say only the lawyers come out of it with a lot of money. However, you might want to look into it.

    I don’t mean to poke into your business but it really pisses me off that you went through all that stress, worry & hard-earned money for them to blow you off with a piddly amount of money.

    A friend of mine has her cat on a prescription diet from her vet & her cat, with urinary problems, is not getting better. I have tried to tell her that stuff is useless but she won’t listen to me. I finally gave up. She will have to lose that cat before she’ll believe that her vet doesn’t really know everything about nutrition & that prescription junk is a big joke……& an expensive joke too.

  24. 3FURS says:

    Yesterday I had my dog to the vet for a cut on her face. When she was finished, she wanted to give my dog a treat. They sell Hills. So I said “NO” rather loudly. She said ” allergies?” And I said ” poison”. She smerked and said ok.

  25. txbulldog1 says:

    I would have shot through the roof getting that back as a response! I belive I lost my cat to one of the dry foods on the recall list but it wasn’t known to me until 2 wks. later that there was a recall and he had already been buried. He was a healthy cat and all of the sudden he vanished for a couple of days and when he returned he was dehydrated and sluggish. I took him to the vet as soon as I found him and was told he was in kidney failure to the point there was no helping him so I had him put out of his suffering. After all of that and I hear of something like this and it makes me sick I would have went to every media outlet that would listen because that was just wrong on so many levels. Not so much for money but because that was insult to injury just an apology letter would have done for me even though I’m sure they have them printed out by the masses the coupon was a slap in the face though.

  26. shelia says:

    this is hard so hard to write about. you see my cat joey would have been 6 years old on july 3rd .he got sick so fast just two days When we took him to the vets .Nothing could be done for him.his kidneys had failed.
    I just put him in my arms and held him,kissed him and. told him I loved him. then they had to put him down.we took him home and buried him.
    I took menu foods two weeks before anyone would call us back’And then we just got the claims work out to us. then there was nothing in the letter saying sorry about your pet.Said fill this out and send back.

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