WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY from 9PM thursday to 10AM Friday for Western North Carolina and much of the Upstate. Black ice on area roadways as temperatures drop below freezing. Caution is advised.
ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- A local family says their healthy 11-month-old German Shepherd mix was poisoned by his dog food.
Sandi Boniello says Toby became sick all of the sudden and the vet diagnosed him with acute kidney failure. She says, within days he had to be put to sleep.
Boniello's claim comes as a class-action lawsuit was filed this month against Purina on behalf of a about 3,000 dog owners who say their pets died under similar circumstances after eating Purina's Beneful brand food.
"When we have cases that don't make sense, when you have a dog that suddenly develops kidney failure ... that should raise some questions," said Dr. Randy Wetzel at REACH Animal Hospital, which took care of Toby. "Why did that happen?"
Wetzel said Thursday that at this point, based on what he knows, it can't be concluded whether it was Beneful that triggered Toby's kidney failure, but he said it wouldn't hurt for concerned owners to discontinue use - at least for now.
The lawsuit alleges that mycotoxins - which are produced from a wheat fungus - and a controversial additive called propylene glycol are the components poisoning pets. The latter is used in pet-friendly antifreezes and approved for use in dog food, but only in certain amounts said Dr. Wetzel.
Symptoms reported by dog owners that have joined the suit include hair loss, diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration and renal failure.
Purina has not recalled the food and says the suit is "baseless".
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