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Rat Poison Found to be the Cause of Death of Numerous Pets Around the Country

After numerous pets around the US mysteriously died from their food, the cause has finally been linked to a chemical known for its use as rat poison: aminopterin.

According to the New York Times: "The poison, aminopterin, a rodenticide that has not been approved for use in the United States or in Canada, was found in wet food manufactured by Menu Foods of Ontario and distributed under more than 90 brands, including Eukanuba, Hill’s Science Diet and Nutro Natural Choice, and under store brands including Hannaford, Wal-Mart and Winn-Dixie. (A complete list can be found at menufoods.com/recall.)"

According to an AP Wire Story (printed in the Star Tribune): "After the announcement, the company that produced the food expanded its recall to include all 95 brands of the "cuts and gravy" style food, regardless of when they were produced. The company also said it would take responsibility for pet medical expenses incurred as a result of the food."

Officials are not yet sure how the chemical got into the food, because the drug, also used in the past to induce abortions, is illegal in the US and Canada. They are still looking at various possibilities, including sabotage. In addition to this investigation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been notified in the event of a public health problem.

While both stories featured basically the same information, the AP story failed to mention exactly which brands of food were being effected by the chemical, which I found myself asking until I read the story by the NY Times, which had all the information. They also had considerably more interviews with the owners of a few of the pets who have been victims to the poisonings.