Holly (l) and Thomas (r) both have to sit in their highchairs to eat. (Supplied: Elisia Nichol)
The number of canine struck down by a debilitating and probably deadly situation believed to be linked to a well-liked Australian canine food has jumped from 74 to greater than 100, 7.30 has found as half of its ongoing investigation into the pet food industry.
Advance Dermocare dry canine food was pulled from the cabinets in late March after a spike in megaesophagus cases.
Melbourne University believes there’s a hyperlink between the situation and the food, however is but to scientifically show it.
It says its investigation consists of on the lookout for recognized toxins in the food, however its work will take a while as some of the checks have by no means been carried out on pet food and require validating.
It has now revised up the number of cases it’s wanting into.
‘We’re juggling three upright feeds a day’
Elisia Nichol’s canine Holly was fed Advance Dermocare and has megaesophagus.
“I’m devastated to hear that over 100 dogs and their owners have been given the diagnosis of megaesophagus,” she advised 7.30.
“I’m so saddened to know that so many others are also living with this life-changing diagnosis and heartbroken for those who have lost their pets.”
Megaesophagus causes a canine’s oesophagus to lose its elasticity, making it troublesome to swallow.
Ms Nichol stated Holly must be fed upright for the relaxation of her life in a specifically made chair to cease regurgitation of food, water and saliva.
“We are now juggling three upright feeds per day which take about two hours per day while trying to raise our 10-month-old son, work and maintain a quality of life for all,” she stated.
‘Would this be acceptable if it was a child food firm?’
Advance Dermocare is made by the multi-billion greenback international firm Mars Petcare.
It says whereas a definitive trigger has not been discovered, it has provided compensation as a “gesture of goodwill”.
But the substance of the supply and circumstances hooked up have angered Rachel Dola and Jodi Burnett, each of whom are affected house owners.
They’ve additionally arrange a Facebook group to help others.
“So far, the best Mars can do is offer to consider people’s claims for reimbursement of veterinary costs,” Ms Burnett informed 7.30.
“Not as a result of they’re admitting legal responsibility, however ‘as a gesture of goodwill’, as they declare to understand how tense it may be to have a sick pet.
“They have additionally provided to switch individuals’s deceased canine. This state of affairs isn’t ok.
“If this was a baby food company, and people’s babies were sick and dying, would it be acceptable for the manufacturer to offer to pay medical costs at the company’s discretion, and then suggest that people have another child to replace the one they just buried? Of course not.”
In a press release to 7.30 Mars Petcare stated it was “deeply saddened that a cluster of Australian dogs that consumed Advance Dermocare dry dog food have been diagnosed with unexplained megaoesophagus”.
“We understand, as part of the ongoing investigation into cases of the condition, that diet may be a significant risk factor in the development of megaoesophagus in this instance, however extensive tests on the product have not found a root cause.”
Pet food an ‘unregulated industry that should change’
Rachel Dola’s dog Zara had to be euthanased after getting megaesophagus (Supplied: Rachel Dola)
The megaesophagus controversy has sparked requires a shake-up of Australia’s self-regulated pet food industry.
Mars Petcare was first alerted to a possible drawback with Advance Dermocare in December after 9 Victoria Police canine that ate the food developed megaesophagus.
One was euthanased.
The product was pulled from cabinets three months later.
“Mars had the opportunity to recall this product much earlier than they did, and so possibly reduce the number of affected pets,” Ms Burnett stated.
Ms Dola stated there have been no legal guidelines governing pet food manufacturing in Australia, or recollects, and that wanted to vary.
“Where is the legislation that pet food companies, who boast their clinically tested recipes, have to follow?” she requested.
“Australia has fallen approach behind the relaxation of the world.
“There is not any safety for any pet proprietor in Australia buying from an unregulated industry, and it wants to vary.”
A Change.org petition calling for Australia’s pet food industry to be regulated has to date acquired greater than 41,000 signatures.