Pedigree recalls dog food

2004-03-08 15:15

Taipei - US dog food maker Pedigree began recalling its dry dog food from Taiwan shelves on Monday following the deaths of hundreds of Taiwan puppies from kidney failure.

"Consumers can return dry Pedigree dog food to pet stores where they bought it and get a refund. A new batch of Pedigree dog food will be ready in a month's time," said Chen Hsing-wen, spokesperson for Eiffem Foods, Taiwan's distributor of Pedigree.

"This does not mean there is something wrong with Pedigree. We are doing this out of the sense of responsibility and to show we are concerned about the dogs (dying)," she said.

Rumours began circulating on the internet early this year that hundreds of pet dogs in Taiwan had fallen ill after eating Pedigree - 30 of them dying from massive kidney failures.

Further reports claimed that most of the dogs that were dying were puppies, which has confused many of Taiwan's health officials and vets as it is usually only adult dogs that die from kidney failures.

Some dog owners suspect that this specific batch of Pedigree, which was made in Thailand, might have been contaminated by the recent outbreak of the bird flu epidemic in that country.

However, tests done by the Taiwan branch of the Switzerland-based SGS Laboratory and by Taiwan's Department of Agriculture recently showed that Pedigree is safe for canine consumption.

Eiffem Foods Taiwan has put up one million Taiwan dollars to help authorities and health officials find out the cause of the dogs' mysterious deaths. - Sapa-dpa