Sportmix Class Action Lawsuit Filed Over Pet Poisonings, Deaths
Several consumers have filed a class action lawsuit over recalled Sportmix pet foods, after their dogs became extremely ill or died from aflatoxins, which are poisonous carcinogens and mutagens produced by certain molds.
A complaint (PDF) was filed late last week in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana alleges that Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc. failed to adequately test or inspect the pet food before selling it, resulting in several pet deaths and large veterinarian bills for animal owners.
This is at least the second Sportmix class action lawsuit filed against the company following recalls issued in late December and early January, which impacted pet foods sold under the labels Sportmix, Pro Pac and other brand names. The action was taken following at least 70 confirmed cases of dog food poisoning, including nearly 30 dog deaths from aflatoxin poisoning after eating the pet foods.
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According to allegations in the latest lawsuit, the manufacturer failed to disclose, and actively concealed, information about the risk the pet food was contaminated with aflatoxins, delaying the recall process and placing profits over consumer safety.
One of the plaintiffs listed in the lawsuit, Harvey E. Williams, a resident of Georgia, claims he purchased Sportmix Premium High Energy dog food in early December 2020, and began feeding it to his American pit bulls. Williams states that shortly after feeding the animals the pet dog food, two of the adult dogs began experiencing severe sluggishness and intestinal issues.
Williams claims the two dogs suddenly died within days of eating the subsequently recalled Sportmix dog food, and their liter of eight puppies who were fed the same line of dog food all unexpectedly died shortly after the Christmas holiday from toxic levels of aflatoxins.
Another plaintiff listed in the lawsuit, Owen Woodall, of North Carolina, claims he was forced to euthanize his dog after he began to experience loss of appetite, weight loss, gastrointestinal issues, and growths on his intestines and anus from eating contaminated Sportmix Energy Plus pet food.
Several additional parties involved in the lawsuit claim similar losses in which their pet dogs experienced severe side effects requiring continued veterinarian treatment after consuming one of the recalled Midwestern Pet Foods products.
The plaintiffs say they would not have purchased the pet food products had they known the products contained, or might have contained, dangerous or toxic levels of Aflatoxin.
The lawsuit claims the manufacturer failed to adequately test or inspect the pet food products and negligently misrepresented the products as safe for animal consumption. Among other allegations include negligence, fraud, and unjust enrichment.
Sportmix Pet Food Recalls
Midwestern Pet Foods issued the first dog and cat food recall on December 30, 2020, after the Missouri Department of Agriculture performed a series of random sample testing, which discovered very high levels of aflatoxin in certain Sportmix Energy Plus, Sportmix Premium High Energy and Sportmix Original Cat foods.
Another Midwestern pet food recall was issued on January 11, indicating at least 70 animal deaths and 80 illnesses were linked to products produced at the company’s Chickasha Operations Facility. As a result of the increasing number of pet deaths and illnesses reported, the manufacturer expanded the recall to include all Sportmix brands, as well as Pro Pac Adult Mini Chunk, Pro Pac Performance Puppy, Splash Fat Cat 32%, and Nunn Better Maintenance brands.
Officials are encouraging pet owners to destroy the products in a way that pets and wildlife cannot access them, and to sanitize all pet food bowls, cups, and storage containers the recalled products may have contacted.
Those who have fed the recalled products to their pets are being encouraged to watch for symptoms of aflatoxin poisoning and to contact their veterinarian immediately. Veterinarians and pet owners are being instructed to report all related cases through the FDA’s Safety Reporting Portal.
AunnarayAugust 18, 2021 at 2:08 pm
I had a dog die recently due to these exact symptoms and I was feeding him Sportsmix high energy dog food. At first he stopped eating. We monitored him and then eventually took him to the vet. He experienced intestinal issues, vomiting, and weakness. They were able to get him better while staying at the vet. Then when he came home and started eating the dog food again the same thing started happen[Show More]I had a dog die recently due to these exact symptoms and I was feeding him Sportsmix high energy dog food. At first he stopped eating. We monitored him and then eventually took him to the vet. He experienced intestinal issues, vomiting, and weakness. They were able to get him better while staying at the vet. Then when he came home and started eating the dog food again the same thing started happening. This time dark orange urine, weakness, intestinal issues, loss of apatite. We took him back to the vet and the doctor was stumped. He tested negative for things like parvo and all the normal illnesses. Meanwhile we were still feeding him the sportsmix. Our other two dogs refused to eat it. We took him back and forth to the vet several times testing for all types of things and the vet even suggested it presents like some sort of food illness. He eventually had to go stay long term at the vet and had to be put down due to them not being able to help and he was in so much pain. This has been really hard on us and now that I see this I can understand what was wrong with my dog. I still have every vet bill and dog food receipt and I want justice for my baby. All we did was feed him the food that we thought we could trust.
LarryFebruary 6, 2021 at 2:06 am
I lost two registered Mountain Cur squirrel dogs one week ago after feeding them Sportmix Premium dog feed.
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