Veterinarian weighs in on Beneful health risk controversy

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- A class action lawsuit has been filed by a pet owner who claims his pets got sick, and one even died after switching to Purina Beneful's dry food.

"We've had a number of calls today. People questioning whether they should or should not be continuing to feed Beneful," said Dr. Randall Carpenter, D.V.M. "Theorizing possibly propolyn glycol, which is a preservative that is causing difficulties."

Propolyn glycol, the toxin in question, has been used in common items for years according to Dr. Carpenter at Family Friends Veterinary Hospital in Grand Rapids. These products include salad dressings and cake mixes.

"Anti freeze is pure propylene glycol and certainly in a pure form it is very very toxic, but commonly used as has been for years and years and years as a preservative for food, both for human and pet," said Dr. Carpenter.

Dr. Carpenter said that nothing has been proven, and a number of health issues could be to blame for pet illnesses not related to the popular pet food.

"The jury is still out. I don't think we should all rush to judgment. Let's let the scientist do their work and really determine whether there is a link. I seriously question whether their is or not," said Dr. Carpenter.

If your pet eats Beneful dog food, Dr. Carpenter advises to stick with it, if your pet is healthy.

"I would continue to feed Beneful. I would not hesitate to feed my own pet Beneful at this point," said Doctor Carpenter.

Purina also issued a statement about the issue:

"We believe the lawsuit is without merit. Beneful is a high quality nutritious food enjoyed by millions of dogs."

Dr. Carpenter also said that most dog foods manufactured in the United States are healthy for dogs, providing a balanced diet.


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  • Katie DeMond

    we took our lab to the vet in December and were told he was 20 lbs overweight. He was a valued family member so we went right out and got him Beniful Healthy Weight. He died in January. The vet asked us if there was any way he could have gotten into antifreeze because he was showing signs of poisoning. We chalked it up to being 9 yrs old. Sad to think it could have been the dog food. We lost a part of the family

  • Grumpcuss

    Dr. Carpenter needs to get his facts straight. Anti-freeze, the extremely toxic kind, is ethylene glycol, not the same thing. Propylene glycol is used as a component of some of the newer “pet friendly” non-toxic anti-freeze products, but is listed by the FDA as “generally recognized as safe.” It has long been used in a wide variety of food and personal care products.
    Another article on this case also included the possibility of mycotoxins from mold contamination on some of the grains. Laboratory testing will be needed to determine if any are present.

  • Cathy

    Sure Dr. Carpenter would continue to feed his dog that crap…right!! NOT ….I am throwing ALL my dog food away and going to find something that is safe. I don’t know what yet..looking for suggestions!!

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