Previous month:
September 2010
Next month:
November 2010

October 2010

Omega-3 Fish Oil Webinar - Thursday, November 4th at 9:00 p.m. Eastern Time

 

 

 

 

I would like to invite you to a really interesting webinar this Thursday night on the health benefits of omega-3's from fish oil. Omega-3's seem to be popping up everywhere... online, TV and magazines. However, sometimes all this information can get overwhelming. If you want the simple facts on how omega-3's can impact your health, click on the link below to register for this webinar.

The webinar will be held on Thursday, November 4th at 9:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

It's easy. Click on the link below, enter your first and last name and email address. Then click

on the “Register Now” button. That's it. You’re registered.

https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/608003817

 After the webinar, visit our Life's Abundance Fish Oil site to learn even more about the benefits of Omega 3's and you can also contact us direct with any questions you have


Nature's Variety Recalls Selected Bags Of Instinct Rabbit Meal Formula Grain Free Kibble Diet For Cats

Nature’s Variety has issued a voluntary recall of two date codes and two sizes of Nature’s Variety Instinct Rabbit Meal Formula grain free kibble for cats. Nature’s Variety recently discovered that some bags of its Instinct Rabbit Meal Formula kibble for cats may contain small pieces of ground sorghum in the product. While this presents no health risk to the cats being fed this product, the company says that this formulation is not consistent with Instinct’s grain free standards or Nature’s Variety’s insistence upon meeting the highest standards of integrity for all products.

According to Nature’s Variety, very little of this kibble has made it to the market, and there is no health risk to people or pets. However, any consumer who has the affected product should stop feeding it to their cat, and return it to their retailer for a refund.

The two lot codes of Nature’s Variety Instinct Rabbit Meal Formula grain free kibble diet for cats affected by the recall are:

UPC# 7 69949-60385 6– 5.5 lb. best if used by 09/28/11

UPC# 7 69949-60381 8– 12.1 lb. best if used by 09/29/11


Your Pets Depend On You To Stay Healthy - Are You?

The cat’s bowl is full of nutritious Instinctive Choice. Your canine companion has had his daily Wellness Food Supplement. You know that you are forgetting something, but you just can’t seem to place it. Maybe it’s not something you’re forgetting but rather someone! As important of a role your pets play in your life, you are the main character in their lives! Without you who would they turn to?

By changing a few simple things in your daily routine, you could be around for more belly scratches and rub downs!

Get Active – Don’t just let Fido out by himself – join him. A recent survey found that more than 65% of Americans are overweight or obese. Since the health problems associated with excess weight include heart disease, diabetes and stroke, it's important to make weight loss and fitness a priority in your life. So lace up those sneakers and take your dog for a daily walk at the local park or around your block! The fresh air will invigorate you and the companionship of your dog will make this daily activity more enjoyable and seem less like exercise. Not only will this help keep your weight under control, but it will also help make for a healthier heart.

Eat Healthy – You feed your pets the best, most nutritious foods, and you should be doing the same. Hate the word “diet”? Try the 80-20 factor. Eat healthy 80% of the time and indulge for the other 20%. This is a very simple way to improve your diet. The American Heart Association recommends eating foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. An easy way to ensure that you are getting health-promoting omega-3 fatty acids on a daily basis is to try Life's Abundance Sealogix Omega-3 Fish Oil. Thanks in large part to its superior quality, purity and concentration of nutrients, Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil represents an exceptional value compared to other market brands.

Stop Smoking – Many of us grew up when smoking was cool. Well, it’s not cool anymore. The American Heart Association could not have put it any clearer. Smoking is the most preventable cause of premature death! Your bad habit does not only affect you - it affects everyone in your home – pets included! There are so many cessation programs available these days that quitting may be easier than you think. Procrastination is one of the biggest hurdles, so make the decision to stop smoking today and consult your health care provider for the program that’s right for you.

Let your pets continue to enjoy the life that you have worked so hard to give them. You need to stay healthy, too!


How Easily Absored Is Your Fish Oil? A Simple Home Test To Determine Your Fish Oil Quality

Not all fish oils are created equal but how can you determine if your fish oil is a quality fish oil? Here is a simple test that you can perform at home to understand that fish oils are quite different.
 
Take a styrofoam egg carton and cut two or three egg holding sections out. Take one or two capsules of your current fish oil brand and take one or two of our Life's Abundance SeaLogix fish oil capsules.  Snip or puncture the end of the capsules.  Place the Life's Abundance SeaLogix fish oil in one section and your current fish oil in another.
 
Note* When using the Life's Abundance SeaLogix with Sesamin you will notice that it has a different consistency than the 8 oz. Life's Abundance SeaLogix liquid. This is due to the addition of the sesamin
and will not effect the overall results of this test other than slightly slow down the process.

This test only takes about 15 minutes and the fish oil will start to pass through the styrofoam within a short period of time. The fact that fish oil can pass through plastic is actually a very good thing! Our intestinal tracts are designed to absorb very very tiny molecules after a food or substance has been digested.  Because Life's Abundance SeaLogix fish oil is in a smaller molecular form, more of it can be absorbed in proportion than other fish oils that have not gone through this type of refinement. This is also why Life's Abundance SeaLogix fish oil is easier on the digestive system in reality because the body does not have to work to break it down in order to use higher amounts of it. If the other fish oil you are testing is a typical health food grade, it will sit in the styrofoam for hours and or days without even attempting to pass through and even molecularly distilled fish oils will sit there. Some fish oils may attempt to disfigure the surface, but they simply don't pass through, or they don't pass through as easily and take a lot longer.  This tells you that they are not as small of a molecule as Life's Abundance SeaLogix fish oil and therefore are not as available for absorption in the intestinal tract.
 
There are other oils that readily pass through the egg carton material but please note that fish oil may or may not be as fresh as ours because of the fact that it has been handled via wharehouses that may or may not be adequately climate controlled and may have sat for hours in a truck during hot weather. Fish oils are very unstable in nature and MUST BE KEPT cool and many of the trucks used to ship them sit for hours in the hot sun on the highway and this can cause a fish oil to be in the beginning stages of rancidity or fully rancid by the time you, the consumer purchases them. 
 
There is also the case of the lawsuit in CA for truth in labeling where they took many brands and had them tested for purity and a lot of them did not pass. Some had very high levels of dioxin and the labels claimed that they were free of contaminants and some were even molecularly distilled fish oils. For more information on that you can Google Artilcle 65 court case in CA for fish oils. It is also interesting to note that one of the companies listed in the class action lawsuit is a major supplier to other companies
selling fish oils!

IFOS, the International Fish Oil Standards organization is widely recognized as the world’s premier fish oil testing agency and does independant testing. Please be sure to use only a 5 Star Fish Oil which is the highest possible rating a fish oil can receive and has received it from IFOS.

Compare your fish oil to Life's Abundance SeaLogix Fish Oil


Dangers of Chantix Revealed - When Quitting Smoking Becomes Deadly

Many smokers seeking a cessation solution probably thought they had found a safe, fool-proof method with Pfizer’s introduction of Chantix, which targets the nicotine receptors in the brain. However, reported dangerous side effects of Chantix have recently surfaced, causing so much controversy that the FAA banned pilots and air traffic controllers from taking it after concluding a series of investigative reports.

Chantix warnings include the possibility of experiencing suicidal thoughts and behaviors, seizures, loss of consciousness, hallucinations, as well as vivid nightmares and sleepwalking episodes. Others reported becoming addicted to Chantix.

Chantix problems don’t end there. As of today, and with 988 reports, Chantix is ranked first among all drugs in reported problems. Once hailed as the most innovative drug to help smoker’s overcome nicotine addiction, Pfizer’s new wonder drug was ten years in the making and after the FDA approved it as a smoke cessation aid, Chantix entered the pharmaceutical market at full force and received rave reviews in the process for its ability to take away the drug-induced pleasure of smoking cigarettes.

Meanwhile, given the new reports of dangerous side effects of Chantix, what is a smoker looking to quit to do? The damages and effects of smoking cigarettes have long been known, and more people now than ever have made the choice of giving up smoking– but it’s definitely not easy. Some doctors agree that nicotine addiction can be even harder to let go of then alcohol and illegal substances, and according to Pfizer’s web site, “Smoking cessation, with or without treatment, is associated with nicotine withdrawal symptoms."

Nicotine addiction is actually more than a habit, according to Dr. Neal L. Benowitz of the University of California, “Tobacco addiction is best considered a chronic disease, with most smokers requiring repeated interventions over time before achieving permanent abstinence”.

So if withdrawal symptoms cannot be avoided, why add the possibility of experiencing potentially deadly side effects to the recipe? Natural remedies can be used to aid the difficult process of quitting smoking– while avoiding unnecessary side effects.

Pleasant smoking effects such as reduced tension and stress can be counterbalanced with certain herbs by supporting the nervous system and helping to maintain balanced serotonin levels in the brain. Natural remedies can also address the irritability and restlessness associated with withdrawal. In order to successfully stick to a cessation program, it is essential to support these bodily systems.

Herbs to help quit smoking also generally aid the body’s detoxification process. Detoxifying the body with a wholesome diet, regular exercise, and the help of natural remedies will also help in dutifully following a plan of improving health.

Get More Info on the Stop Smoking UltraPack to Stop Smoking Without Drugs or Nicotine Get More Information on Crave-Rx Drops for Nicotine Withdrawal Symptoms Get More Info on Rx-Hale Tablets for Nicotine Withdrawal Symptoms Before They Even Start Get More Info on Triple Complex NicoTonic Tissue Salts for Withdrawal from Nicotine and Addictive Drugs


Consumer Complaints About Iams Pet Foods

I was on the Consumer Affairs website and there are hundreds of complaints about Iams pet food. If you would like to view all of the reports please go to their site at http://www.consumeraffairs.com/pets/iams.html

Here are just some of the recent complaints on the site-

Lacy of Yakima, WA October 2, 2010

I echo the complaints of many I have seen posted on this site, the ASPCA website and others.

I purchased a large bag of IAMS proactive health minichunks and my dog had diarrhea initially, but over time she became very ill. She vomited, had bloody stools and appeared to be hallucinating. Would not eat or drink for 24 hours.

After not being exposed to the food for a 24 hour period, she became more energetic and began drinking water again. I purchased her regular food, the proactive large breed formula and she has had one regular stool but still seems under the weather. After reading all of the comments on the internet, I may switch her food altogether.

IAMS seems to have problems maintaining a quality product--and it is disappointing that so many people are reporting having problems with minichunks without any official word from the company.

Jeannine of Howell,, MI October 1, 2010

Dog quit eating, losing weigh, breathing problems. Refused to eat until we changed pet food. He is VERY SMART BORDER COLLIE> also will not eat any sugar free products.

Karol of Lincoln City, OR September 30, 2010

A few weeks ago we purchased a new bag of Iams mini chunks dry dog food (in the green bag).

Late last week I noticed that my dog was having loose bowls. I didn't attribute it to anything serious and fed him some pumpkin, which is a common remedy. I felt something was just not right with him, and I watched him for a few more days.

He started panting for no reason and then his diarrhea became very bloody. I was horrified!! We immediately contacted the vet and took in a stool sample. The vet found no parasites, but said that the amount of mucous/slime in the stool was a result of an inflamed colon which most likely indicates a food problem. At the same time, I started doing internet research and saw recent identical stories to mine after dogs had eaten the same Iams dog food!!

I'm also reading that some dogs have died! Also, one owner put their dog down, before they knew it was the Iams, because they couldn't bare to see their dog suffering. I only want to get the word out there that there is something very WRONG with this food so that other dogs/owners don't have to go through this.

DJ of Buffalo Grove, IL September 29, 2010

IAMS distributed contaminated dog food injuring my pet which took his life yesterday 9/28.

For over thirty (30) days Proctor & Gamble had permission to contact my vet, but did they do so? No, they did not. Additionally, I made numerous calls to them (Proctor & Gamble/IAMS), yet I never received a call back, even after I informed them that ALL FOUR OF MY DOGS were getting ill from the recalled food. Once I finally did connect with Proctor & Gamble/IAMS, they attempted to intimidate me by saying they would close the case if I would not give them permission to contact my vet.

They had over thirty days to do so, and they think they can strong-arm me into giving them more time? How can this be a credible organization,? I wonder how their shareholders would feel if this information was made public? I withdrew my permission for them to contact my vet, since not only did they not follow through with what they said they would do. I did not receive one ounce of compassion for the situation THEY CAUSED.

Three of my four dogs recovered recovered from Proctor & Gamble’s/IAM’s incompetence, sadly my sweet Brody did not recover. my pup was on the regimen with the deplorable food and had to be put down yesterday (September 28, 2010) since he could not recover from the damage Proctor & Gamble/IAMS caused with their product.

IAMS informed me that they have lost my paperwork. Seriously?! This only goes to show how grossly inadequate they are as a company, however, I realize that this is THEIR PROBLEM NOT MINE. My issue lies in the severity of the illness they INFLICTED on my poor sweet pup which ultimately lead to the LOSS OF HIS LIFE!! Proctor & Gamble/IAMS MUST BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE for the damage they have caused; not only to my family, but the numerous people affected by their inferior products.

Additionally, they threatened to close my case if I withdrew my permission for them to to speak to my vet, after they had over 30 days to do so. CLEARLY having my case open did me no good in the OVER 30 DAYS they did have the access. Nor did it help my sweet Brody -- may he rest in peace. I was also told by the inadequate corporation this is an "unfortunate" thing. UNFORTUNATE?! UNFORTUNATE -- they KILLED my PET! I in no way accept this. IAMS cannot threaten people who give permission to them and they don't follow through with what they say they will do.

I have a copies of ALL medical records NOW that will be RELEASED at the proper time for the DAMAGES THEY ARE RESPONSIBLE for. I realize that none of it will bring back my sweet love Brody, however, I WANT CONSUMERS and PETS PROTECTED from such GROSS INCOMPETENCE. I HOLD IAMS SOLELY accountable for the death of my dog due to the salmonella contamination he consumed from their product, which caused a WEAKENING of his immune system. In addition, MY VET had referred to me a specialist after WEEKS of illness. I have contacted the FDA about the incidient CAUSED by this WORTHLESS company, and informed them of the INJURIES to families and animals and the DEPLORABLE and CRUEL customer service I received. My sweet pup was hospitalized THREE TIMES and developed aspiration pneumonia as a result of IAMS FOOD MAKING HIM SO SICK. He consumed the RECALLED food and my HEART IS BROKEN BEYOND any reasonable means of expression; and NEEDLESSLY because of the IAMS -- PROCTOR & GAMBLE. For clarity, allow me to reiterate PROCTOR & GAMBLE/IAMS KILLED MY BELOVED PET who was laid to rest YESTERDAY after MONTHS of suffering at the hand of IAMS / PROCTOR & GAMBLE! This is not the FIRST TIME this organization has created such OUTRAGOUS CRIMES by distributing contaminated food. I have not asked for 1 cent from this terrible company. Any money from them is BLOOD MONEY, and I’m not looking to line my pockets. I want PROTECTION from such a grossly incompetent organization. The information related to my pets passing will be released at the proper time and to an organization WORTHY of the information. Hopefully this will cause fewer families to be subjected to IAMS brand. IAMS is threatening me to close a file they never did a thing about unless I now let them speak to my vet. They had that availablity for over 30 days which they did NOT exercise the right and now I have rescinded. In closing, I wish to state that I will NEVER be intimidated by such a company. I have PROOF that the food they DISTRIBUTED (and I purchased) was contaminated, as well as EVERY MEDICAL RECORD and TEST performed. IAMS has been heartless in this entire ordeal, and to be clear it is NOT MONEY I WANT -- NOT 1 cent of their BLOOD MONEY -- they KILLED my dog! IThe crimes P&G/IAMS have committed are beyond outrageous, and as I said my sweet Brody's life was TAKEN yesterday!

Here's how Iams describes itself:

P&G Pet Care exists to enhance the health and well being of more dogs and cats. For over fifty years, Iams has supported a team of Pet Care professionals who handle consumer questions and concerns. This team, which includes pet nutrition experts and veterinary technicians, is thoroughly trained on our products, the science behind them and general pet nutrition. They are pet passionate pet parents and are available to assist you Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 6 PM EST at 800-525-4267 or through email at http://www.iams.com/ (go to “Contact us” or “Support”). Please contact us with questions and concerns regarding Iams products. 

 


Problems With Blue Buffalo Dog Food - 1st Hypercalcemia, Then Vitamin D Issues Now A Recall?

Blue Buffalo dog food has been hitting the "unpublicized" news for awhile. Now it appears as though there is a recall on their website but it has no dates and is also not on the FDA recall list. I always say you, as the consumer, need to stay informed and make good decisions (not only about your pets but also as you their caregiver) so you be the judge when making a decision about what to feed your beloved pet.....

Here is all the information we have -

From - http://news.vin.com/VINNews.aspx?articleId=16468

Veterinarians report mysterious link between dog food and hypercalcemia  


August 31, 2010
By: Jennifer Fiala
For The VIN News Service


Veterinarians are trying to discern whether roughly a dozen dogs testing positive for hypercalcemia and consuming the same high-end diet is merely coincidence or a problem with the pet food in question.

The reports have cropped up on the Veterinary Information Network (VIN), an online community for the profession and parent of the VIN News Service. In message board discussions, veterinarians have revealed cases of hypercalcemia secondary to vitamin D toxicosis occurring in dogs that eat a single brand of dry pet food: Blue Buffalo Wilderness Diet, chicken flavor. In each of the cases, veterinarians report that dogs’ conditions have improved after switching brands.

So far, nothing concrete has identified a causal relationship between the food and illnesses in dogs. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), while reportedly alerted to adverse events tied to the food, has not prompted a recall, though the VIN News Service has been unable to reach officials with the regulatory agency directly.

Officials with Wilton, Conn.-based Blue Buffalo report that “tens of thousands of dollars” and hundreds of hours have been spent analyzing various batches of dog food, including samples from bags directly linked to specific cases of dogs testing positive for hypercalcemia and vitamin D toxicity.

Richard MacLean, vice president of business affairs, says one thing is certain: Test results thus far have shown nothing unusual about the product’s formulation; amounts of calcium and vitamin D, in particular, are within the company’s specifications and well below levels that might be considered toxic. The company’s focus has been on Blue Buffalo Wilderness Chicken Recipe, manufactured in April 2010 with a best-used-by date of July 2011. Vitamin D toxicity, or hypervitaminosis D, induces bone loss and abnormally high serum calcium levels, which could result in kidney stones and the calcification of organs like the heart and kidneys if left untreated.

“We really do take very seriously our commitment to providing health nutrition to pets,” MacLean says. “From the moment this issue came up, we are looking to find out if this is something we can do something about.”

Dr. Joy Mueller, a veterinarian in Santa Rosa, Calif., says the condition isn’t one that an owner will likely miss.

Recently, her two-year-old Australian shepherd became lethargic, releasing copious amounts of extremely dilute urine throughout her house and drinking large amounts of water. Heeding the red flags, she tested the dog’s blood and noted elevated calcium levels and a low platelet count. Hypercalcemia is often associated with kidney cancer and lymphoma.

Yet after ruling out possible problems with kidney function, Mueller turned to the Blue Buffalo Wilderness chicken and turkey flavored dry food that the dog had been eating for two weeks and changed brands.

The result was dramatic; the dog's condition improved within 24 hours.

Mueller came to the association between the food and her dog’s condition independently of the VIN discussions on the topic, though she did not test her dog for elevated levels of vitamin D and cannot be certain that toxic levels of it prompted the animal's illness. Still, she e-mailed the VIN News Service last Friday to spread the word about her findings to other veterinarians.

Reflecting on the turn of events, she says: “Vitamin D toxicosis was not my first thought. Various types of cancer including kidney cancer were the big rule outs. I wasn’t thinking food until I switched him.”

While Mueller believes that the food is tied to her dog’s condition, she suspects the reaction was idiosyncratic.

“It’s such a dramatic response that if a large number of dogs that ate this food had it, you would hear about more cases,” she says. “You can’t miss it peeing all the time and going through gallons of water.

“I suspect this has more to do with the dogs than the food,” Mueller adds. “I'm thinking beyond vitamin D. There may be dogs that have a genetic predisposition to the developing this condition after eating this food. It’s quite a mystery.”

Dr. Kathryn Cochran, a practitioner in Michigan, agrees. She reports that dogs of two different clients were examined in the practices where she works on June 30 and July 16. Both presented with hypercalcemia and test results showed high levels of vitamin D.

Another common thread: Both ate Blue Buffalo Wilderness Diet, chicken flavor, purchased at a PetSmart in Traverse City, Mich.

Cochran’s employer, Dr. Charles Morrison, posted the cases on VIN, and called the company. As a result, Blue Buffulo’s MacLean reports that seven bags were pulled from the Traverse City PetSmart, and tests were conducted on two. He reiterates that nothing unusual has come back on any of the samples analyzed by the company’s labs.

Cochran reports that the dogs have since recovered after being switched to a different brand of pet food. She notes that Blue Buffalo has been proactive about paying for tests, sending out claim forms and preparing to make restitution to owners if the product is found to have caused illness.

She’s concerned that other cases might not be identified.

“I’ve been tearing my hair out trying to get people to talk to me on this,” she says. “Maybe there are more cases out there like this.”

Experts in the field of diagnostics think so, too. Dr. Kent Refsal, an endocrinologist with the Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health at Michigan State University, works at one of the only veterinary labs in America running tests for vitamin D toxicity.

“So if a veterinarian has an animal with an abnormality of calcium, they go through a list of differential diagnoses,” Refsal explains. “Our tests can help sort through that. In terms of the kind of test outcomes we get, we do not see many instances that raise concern for vitamin D toxicosis.”

Considering the rarity of such events, Refsal took notice when the sample from Cochran tested positive for elevated levels of vitamin D.

Three weeks later, when Refsal received two samples in the same assay run from dogs in Texas showing evidence of vitamin D excess, he contacted the clinics in question and was informed that the dogs were eating food from Blue Buffalo.

Since then, Refsal reports that similar tests results from two dogs in Colorado have Blue Buffalo-produced food as the common factor. The lab, he says, has contacted the Michigan Department of Agriculture with the findings, though the VIN News Service could not immediately reach agency officials concerning the cases.

“If someone is presented with a question of vitamin D toxicosis, you first wonder whether the animal has been put on some kind of unusual dietary supplement. Our assay is just an indicator of vitamin D intake. It does not specify the source of it,” Refsal says.

Apart from diet, there are other possible explanations for hypervitaminosis D in animals, including exposure to vitamin D analogs like calcipotriene-based psoriasis creams or pest control products made of cholecalciferol.

Veterinarians like Mueller say those explanations are highly unlikely, and even MacLean, of Blue Buffalo, believes that it's possible that there is a relationship between the food and the handful of sick dogs eating the product.

Yet, he cautions, no one has scientifically proven the link. He also notes that reports of at least three other dogs exhibiting signs of hypercalcemia and elevated vitamin D levels without a connection to Blue Buffalo products have surfaced on VIN.

MacLean reiterates that the company’s tests of its dog food have come back as low to mid-level for vitamin D content.

“Everything that we have suggests that it’s not our food,” he says. “We have 30,000 bags of this stuff out there and literally a dozen animals that have a common symptom. On an incident rate, that doesn’t invite the conclusion that there’s something defective about the product.”

Next there is this -

Michigan State University is reporting "a group of illnesses reported in dogs across the country linked to a specific brand of dog food from the Blue Buffalo Co.  Excess Vitamin D seems to be the dangerous concern.

From Michigan State University Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health - The Press Release: http://www.cvm.msu.edu/about-the-college/news-events/news/msu-researchers-link-pet-food-dog-illnesses-nationwide

MSU researchers link pet food, dog illnesses nationwide

EAST LANSING, Mich. — A team of researchers at Michigan State University has discovered a group of illnesses reported in dogs across the country is linked to a specific brand of dog food from the Blue Buffalo Co.

Veterinarians from across the country recently began sending samples from dogs with elevated levels of calcium in their blood to MSU’s Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health, director Carole Bolin said. The sick dogs had increased thirst and urination, and some of them also suffered weight loss, loss of appetite and signs of kidney damage.

Endocrinologists with the Diagnostic Center, a service unit of the College of Veterinary Medicine, soon noticed the pattern and found a common factor: All 16 dogs whose samples were tested had very high levels of vitamin D in their blood and were fed a diet of Blue Buffalo’s Wilderness Chicken Recipe.

The diagnostic center is cooperating with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration on an investigation into the brand, Bolin said.

“The only reason we were able to identify the pattern is because of the vast national resource our center has become,” said Bolin, who added her lab performs more than 1.3 million tests a year. “Because of our nationwide reach and expertise, we were able to discover this and notify the proper authorities.”

It is routine for veterinarians across the country to contact the center for specialized testing to explore the causes of clinical conditions. In this specific case, all the dogs were found to have very high levels of vitamin D in their serum, a quite unusual finding. Endocrinologist Kent Refsal picked up on the pattern of cases and began to investigate.

The affected dogs ranged in age from 8 months to 8 years. There were three mixed-breed dogs and 13 purebred dogs. The samples originated from eight states: Michigan, Texas, Colorado, Wisconsin, California, Illinois, North Dakota and Utah. In addition to the testing, there was either a brief written history and/or communication with the referring veterinarian to discuss the possible sources of excess vitamin D. 

Dogs seem to recover when the diet is changed, Bolin said, and there have not been any reported deaths related to the diet.

For more detailed scientific information, go to http://www.animalhealth.msu.edu/Misc/WEBCD.GEN.REF.026.pdf

Lastly, there is the hard to find recall information on the Blue Buffalo Dog Food website -

From - http://bluebuffalo.com/news/vitamin-d-voluntary-recall.shtml

Octber 8, 2010

Dear Fellow Pet Parent,

At Blue Buffalo, nothing is more important than the health and well being of our dogs and cats, so it’s consistent with this guiding principle that we are voluntarily recalling specific production runs of our Wilderness Chicken-Dog, Basics Salmon-Dog and Large Breed Adult Dog products, as we have reason to believe that the products from these runs may contain a higher level of Vitamin D than is called for in our product specifications.

We came to this conclusion after discovering that our ingredient supplier had made a scheduling error and produced a Vitamin D supplement immediately prior to preparing the ingredients for the BLUE products that are in question. We believe that some of the Vitamin D supplement may have been carried over into our products, resulting in more Vitamin D than is called for in our formulas.

While the potential of increased Vitamin D presents no serious health risk, and any negative reaction to these products has been confined to a very small segment of the canine population who appear to be sensitive to higher levels of Vitamin D, we have a zero tolerance for any product that does not meet our specifications. I think you’ll agree that our decision to withdraw these specific products is simply the right thing to do.

From a next steps standpoint, all products with the specific manufacturing dates in question will be removed from retailer’s shelves. If you have any products with the codes shown below you should stop feeding them immediately.You may call Blue Buffalo at
1-877-523-9114 to arrange for return of the product and reimbursement.

These are the ONLY code dates being recalled:

Product Bag Size Best Used By Dates
BLUE Wilderness Chicken (Dog) 4.5 lb., 11 lb., 24lb. JUL1211B, JUL1311B, JUL2611Z, JUL2711Z, JUL2811Z
BLUE Basics Salmon (Dog) 11 lb., 24 lb. AUG2111B, AUG2211B
BLUE Large Breed Adult Chicken 30 lb. SEP 22 11 P, SEP 23 11 P, OCT 26 11 P

This Vitamin D issue does not effect any other code dates of these products or any other Blue Buffalo dog or cat foods. In addition, new bags of Wilderness Chicken, Basics Salmon and Large Breed Adult Chicken will be available on the shelves so you can continue to feed BLUE with complete confidence.

If your dog has shown any adverse reaction to the recalled products, have him checked by your veterinarian. Typical symptoms might include excessive water intake and/or excessive urination, and in some cases vomiting. Blue Buffalo will reimburse any veterinary or testing expenses related to illness caused by these products.

As Blue Buffalo is a family founded and run company, I am personally very upset about this and apologize for any discomfort or inconvenience that this situation has caused you or your pet family members. Product quality and safety have been, and always will be our top priority, and we’ve taken some serious corrective action to insure that this type of human error will never happen again.

Sincerely, Bill Bishop

Here is my personal response to that letter - From a next steps standpoint, all products with the specific manufacturing dates in question will be removed from retailer’s shelves. If you have any products with the codes shown below you should stop feeding them immediately. How about we are doing everything possible to get this off the shelves immediately and will be working day and night to make sure they are removed, stores put up signs to let the consumer know not to feed these foods? Again, most consumers do not know until it's too late - if you bought dog food, you don't go back the following few days to see if it's been recalls. The media is too lax on recalls and it's up to protective pet parents to spread the word when they see or hear anything about foods being recalled (this goes for human products too).

Here is another statement - In addition, new bags of Wilderness Chicken, Basics Salmon and Large Breed Adult Chicken will be available on the shelves so you can continue to feed BLUE with complete confidence. Ok, WHEN will they be available? Will there be big signs telling people about the recalls or will it be brushed under the table? Pet food companies need to step up and start taking responsibility for their actions and when there is a problem use every venue possible to get the word out - we are talking about dog and cats lives here! I get Blue Buffalo's newsletter and I have not seen this information come through yet :(

One last note, Life's Abundance, which is shipped direct to consumers within 4-6 weeks of being made, keeps track of every customers orders. Some may say - why does this matter? As you can see it would be HUGE in case of any problem where a company can pull a lot number, have the names, addresses, phone number and email of the people that purchased that food and get in touch with them immediately. Life's Abundance has been in business since 1999 and has never been on a recall list - how many other pet food companies can say that? It's all about strict manufacturing guidelines and caring about what ingredients are being added.

Want to check if your dog or cat food has ever been recalled? Stay on top of it at http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/newpetfoodrecalls/


What Are Omega 3 Fatty Acids & What Makes SeaLogix Fish Oil Better Than Other Fish Oils?

Sealogix fish oil What are Omega-3 fatty acids?
Omega-3’s belong to a group of fatty acids known as long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids. Because the body does not manufacture them, Omega-3's are classified as "essential fatty acids" (EFA’s), as it is essential they be obtained from food. There are three important Omega-3 fatty acids: alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). EPA and DHA are found in fish, while ALA is found only in plant foods such as flaxseed meal. The body can convert ALA into small amounts of EPA and DHA, but recent studies have indicated that our bodies are somewhat inefficient in this conversion. Therefore, it is necessary to supplement your diet with these nutrients in order to significantly change your levels of Omega-3’s.

What is sesamin?
Naturally found in sesame seeds as lignans, sesamin comes from the 1% solid portion of the kernel’s oil. Sesame and sesame lignans are associated with health benefits in humans.

How much sesamin is in each serving of Life's Abundance Sealogix (120 capsules)?
Four capsules contains 68 mg of sesame extract, which is 60% sesamin. Therefore, four capsules contains 40.8 mg of sesamin.

What do Omega-3 fatty acids do for the body?
The Omega-3’s EPA and DHA are recognized for their health benefits in all life stages. They are important building blocks for every cell in your body, which requires these crucial components to grow, develop and maintain health.* These fatty acids are an integral part of cell membranes and are precursors of several important cellular messengers.* Studies have demonstrated that EPA is important for optimal brain function and contributes to the reduction of cellular inflammation.* DHA has been recognized for brain, visual and nervous system health and development.* Additionally, these essential fatty acids work together to contribute to good heart health.*

What is the richest source of Omega-3 fatty acids?
Fish oil is the richest source for eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Cold-water fish, like anchovies, salmon and sardines, are considered the best source for these essential fatty acids. It is important to remember, that all omega-3's are not created equal. You would need almost four tablespoons of flaxseed oil to get the same amount of EPA and DHA found in one teaspoon of Sealogix! That's approximately ten times as much flaxseed oil than fish oil.


Why should I take a fish oil supplement?
Changes in food preferences and the impact of modern food processing in Western society have led to a significant decrease in average dietary intake of Omega-3 fatty acids. As a result, most American diets contain far more Omega-6’s than Omega-3’s. In fact, it is estimated that the average American has between twenty to fifty times the amount of Omega-6’s as they do Omega-3’s. Recent studies have indicated that this kind of imbalance can set the stage for a host of health problems. To promote a healthier fatty acid ratio, it is advisable to avoid Omega-6’s (which are commonly found in fried foods, commercial baked goods and some margarines), and eat more baked or broiled seafood and supplement the diet with a high-quality fish oil like Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil.

What are the health benefits associated with taking Omega-3 EFA’s from fish oil?
Scientific evidence has indicated that a diet rich in Omega-3 essential fatty acids helps support:
  • A Healthy Brain
  • A Healthy Heart
  • A Healthy immune system
  • Healthy joint movement
  • Healthy kidneys
  • A balanced mood and sense of wellbeing
  • Strength and stamina
  • And helps maintain cholesterol levels that are already within the normal range*

We invite you to review our extensive research section, which provides summaries of recent scientific inquiries into the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil.

Why does purity matter with regard to fish oil?
Unfortunately, pollution has affected the water quality of all of our oceans. The contaminants in our waters include toxins like mercury, PCB’s, arsenic, lead and cadmium. Consequently, many fish now contain these undesirable elements. That is why it is very important to choose a fish oil that is molecularly distilled. Molecular distillation is a process that concentrates and purifies the fish oil. It is also important to select a fish oil product that is tested for concentration, toxicity and safety by an independent third party. Supplementing your diet with a pharmaceutical-grade fish oil like Sealogix allows you to safely get the additional Omega-3 fatty acids you need.

I’ve researched many fish oil supplements. What makes Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil better?
Sealogix is an ultra-refined, ultra-concentrated, pharmaceutical-grade fish oil awarded an IFOS 5-Star rating for purity and concentration. Because Sealogix is ultra-refined, you can feel confident you are ingesting one of the purest fish oils available. And because Sealogix is ultra-concentrated, you receive more Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA for your money. We invite you to compare Sealogix to other popular brands of fish oil currently on the market. We think you’ll agree that our product represents an exceptional value.

What is IFOS and what does a “5-Star Rating” mean?
IFOS (International Fish Oil Standards) is a division of Nutrasource Diagnostics, Inc., that provides independent, third-party testing for our Sealogix Omega-3 Pharmaceutical-Grade Fish Oil products. IFOS testing judges the quality, purity and concentration of fish oil, based upon the international standards established by the World Health Organization and the Council for Responsible Nutrition. Our rating lets you know that Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil is of the highest quality available on the market today – there is no better rating than a 5-Star.

Do you guarantee freshness and purity?
Yes. When you order Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil, we promise to deliver the highest-quality products in excellent condition, right to your front door. If for any reason your purchase does not meet with your satisfaction, we will gladly replace the product or refund your money (excluding delivery charges). For detailed information on our return policy, please see the invoice included in your shipment.

How much Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil should I take?
The suggested serving for a healthy adult is four 1,000 mg Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil capsules daily (4,000 mg of fish oil concentrate), eight 500 mg Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil capsules daily (4,000 mg of fish oil concentrate) or one teaspoon of Sealogix liquid supplement daily (4,400 mg of fish oil concentrate). Always consult your health care provider for additional guidance on how Omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil can benefit your personal health profile.

What’s the best way to store Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil?
Store Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil capsules in a cool, dry place between 58 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit to maintain maximum freshness. Store Life's Abundance Sealogix liquid in the freezer or refrigerator after opening.

I’ve heard that some fish oils don’t taste very good. What does the liquid Sealogix taste like?
Life's Abundance Sealogix liquid fish oil is virtually tasteless and has a slight citrus flavor.

Learn more about Life's Abundance Sealogix Fish Oil


Did You Get A New Kitten Or Cat? Start Them With The Life's Abundance Healthy Start Pack

Healthystartpackforcats There’s no better way to start your feline’s lifetime of health on the right paw than with the Life’s Abundance Healthy Start Pack for Cats and Kittens. The purchase of this pack saves you 15% off the regular Retail price and 13% off the regular Autoship price when items are purchased individually.

One 6.6 lb. bag of Life’s Abundance Premium Health Food for Kittens & Adult Cats – Our premium, veterinarian-formulated kibble features select ingredients to help cats achieve and maintain optimum health.

One bottle of Life’s Abundance Wellness Food Supplement for Cats – These savory nuggets provide a wide variety of nutritious ingredients in a superior formula created to enhance a cat’s daily diet.

One 4-oz. bag of Life’s Abundance Gourmet Cat Treats for Healthy Skin & Coat – These tasty treats contain nutrients to help cats maintain healthy skin and a strong, resilient coat.

One bottle of Biodeodorizer – Rid the home of odors by eliminating the sources, utilizing friendly bacteria that naturally breakdown organic wastes. An ideal solution for freshening a kitty’s litter box. BioDeodorizer is non-toxic and fully biodegradable, has a neutral pH and contains no harmful phosphates.

Learn more about the products in the Healthy Start Pack For Cats and Kittens


Natural Arthritis Support for Your Pet

Arthritis is a common health complaint in older pets. While many prescription arthritis medications are available, many people prefer to use less invasive methods to help their pets.

Some of these include making changes in the home to improve access for the sick animal; others involve natural supplements and diet changes. Some people even advocate massage therapy and acupuncture to help ease suffering of afflicted animals.

Making Life Easier for Your Arthritic Pet

Arthritis makes it difficult for your pet to move around. To make life easier, keep everything it needs on the main floor, so your pet won’t have to climb any stairs. Try to eliminate slick or slippery surfaces. Make sure your pet has a comfortable bed that will support joints.

Cold temperatures and drafts can worsen arthritis. Keep your pet and your home warm. Reduce drafts by keeping windows and doors closed and by changing out your insulation.

Exercise and Diet for Arthritis

Exercise is an important part of keeping your pet healthy. Any extra weight will only add pressure to the joints, so weight management is key for pets with arthritis.

Regular exercise is a good way to keep your pet at a healthy weight. Exercise also strengthens the muscles, making them better able to support aching joints. Frequent activity keeps the joints from becoming too stiff and can help keep your pet limber. However, be careful not to do too much. Exercise that is too strenuous can do more harm than good by causing more damage to the joints.

Feeding your pet a good diet is also essential. While it helps with issues of weight control, a balanced diet will also give your pet’s body what it needs to heal naturally and keep energy levels up.

Supplements for Pet Arthritis

Some veterinarians also recommend nutritional supplements for pets with arthritis. Glucosamine and chondroitin are especially popular for treating osteoarthritis.

Glucosamine is one of the main components of cartilage. The theory holds that extra glucosamine makes it easier for the chondrocytes (cartilage-forming cells in the joint) to make more cartilage. Chondroitin augments this process, as well as inhibiting certain enzymes believed to be involved in the destruction of cartilage.

Some researchers believe that giving your pet a supplement of glucosamine and chondroitin can not only halt the progression of osteoarthritis, but actually reverse the damage that has already been done. In order to keep the condition from returning, a life-long regimen of these supplements is required. Fortunately, they have very few side effects, but still, you should always consult with your veterinarian before giving your pet any supplements.

Arthritis and Complementary Healing Methods

Massage therapy can be very beneficial to arthritic pets. However, it must be performed correctly so as not to cause pain or permanent damage. Ask your veterinarian about proper techniques, or take your pet to a licensed animal massage therapist.

Some evidence indicates that acupuncture may be beneficial to arthritic pets. If you decide to explore this option, make sure the acupuncturist has experience working with animals.

Arthro-Ionx™ All-Natural Pet Arthritis Formula


Why You Should Never Use Human Shampoo On Your Dog

We hear this question all the time “what’s the difference between my shampoo and my dog’s shampoo?”

You may be surprised to learn that a lot is different. Of course, if you run out of Fido’s shampoo and you use your own to wash your dog a couple of times, nothing will happen. Your dog’s hair won’t fall out and life will probably go on as normal.

But there are areas in which human and dog shampoos differ. You may not notice the ill effects of human shampoo if used only a couple of times, but after repeated use, you’ll start to see.

1. Ingredients. Dog’s have different problems that humans do. We usually don’t sit around and scratch our heads as much as dogs scratch. This is because dog’s eliminate toxins differently than we do. We can sweat them out. Since dogs really don’t sweat, their toxins are eliminated through their kidneys and bowels. Try Healthy Skin Shiny Coat, an all natural herbal detoxifier that you add to your dog’s food. As a topical solution to relieve itchy skin and soothe skin inflammations try products with colloidal oatmeal , boswellia, burdock and comfrey. The best shampoo to help relieve itchy skin is Comfy Dog Oatmeal Shampoo for Dry & Itchy Skin.

2. pH Balance. A dog’s skin has a pH of about 7.5 while human skin is about 5.5 (water is 7.0). Therefore, a dog’s skin is more alkaline so ideally a dog’s shampoo should be between 6.5-7.5 or it could be irritating to the skin. Highly acidic shampoos may also diminish the hair’s protective qualities, removing valuable oil from the coat and skin, the result is dry, irritated skin and a dull coat. (try a super gentle shampoo like Sparkle and Shine instead) Of course it’s a vicious cycle because the dog will scratch which only makes the problem worse.

3. Dog’s have sensitive skin- A dog only has about 3-5 cell-layers thick while we have about 10-15 layers thick. So, harsh shampoos with lots of chemicals and those that aren’t PH balanced will be irritating.

The case for conditioners - Shampoos by design are used for cleaning- removing unwanted grime from the skin and coat. But shampooing, without sealing the coat afterwords, leaves the hair shaft open– at that point residue can enter and oils and hydration escapes.

What you can do is use a conditioner after shampooing to close the hair cuticle and restore hydration, moisture and elasticity.

Conditioners also fill in the damaged hair that drying, brushing, dematting and rubbing causes. Just normal wear and tear chips away at the hair cuticle. Conditioners can help to remove the cuticle to a smooth state and one that gives a more lustrous appearance and feel.

The best deep conditioner I’ve used is Fur Butter (or Fur Worse). It’s an oatmeal based ultra rich conditioning treatment for dry, damaged and long coats. It’s the richest conditioner I’ve used and leaves the dog very soft & silky.

So know you know the difference– there really is one!