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July 26, 2012 / Narine Khngikyan

Deadly Dog Treats At Issue in New Class Action Lawsuit

After hearing the endearing phrase “good boy,” a dog can usually count on receiving a treat as a reward for its good behavior. For one Chicago-area man, the dog treats he gave his dog ended up killing his 9-year old Pomeranian, Cleopatra, shortly after consumption.  Owner Dennis Adkins alleges that “Waggin’ Train” treats, a product of Nestle-Purina Petcare Co., killed his dog. Adkins purchased the dog treats from Wal-Mart and believes the treats not only sickened his dog, but lead to its passing. According to the complaint, after Adkins fed the treats to Cleopatra, the dog became very sick and died 11 days later due to kidney failure.  As a result, Adkins is now suing Nestle-Purina and Wal-Mart for $5 Million in compensatory and punitive damages, and also requesting an injunction preventing any further sale of the product. Adkins is also asking the court to approve the case as a class action lawsuit brought on behalf of anyone who bought Nestle or Waggin’ Train- brand dog treats containing chicken imported from China in the past four years.

In November 2011, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued another warning reminding customers that dogs who consume chicken jerky treats manufactured in China may become ill, experience kidney failure and even die. The cautionary warning was first issue in 2007 and affected products have since been under extensive chemical and microbial testing by the FDA. In response to the suit, Nestle-Purina appears to be standing behind their product and its integrity and quality, t stating, “Waggin’ Train products are safe to feed as directed.” However, it wasn’t until April 16, 2012 that the Waggin Train treats website included a warning about their products and that side effects may occur.

When asked to comment on the lawsuit, Nestle-Purina  declined to comment but spokesperson Keith Schopp mentioned on an earlier occasion that the “safety of pets is the company’s utmost priority and that production of the treats in China is held to the highest quality and safety standards.” Wal-Mart went on to reassure customers that they’re “committed to providing customers and their pets with safe and affordable food” and have since been in contact with the FDA regarding concerns about dog treats that contain chicken jerky dog like the ones Nestle-Purina manufactures.
If you feel you have purchased a product that has caused you or a loved pet to become ill, please contact Khorrami, LLP for a confidential and no-risk consultation.

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