Family’s dog dead – FDA investigating after euthanasia drug discovered in food

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A family is mourning the unexpected loss of their dog and the FDA is launching an investigation after tested dog food revealed the presence of the euthanasia drug, pentobarbital, a barbiturate.  According to WJLA News, the Mael family lost their dog, Talulah, after she ate a can of Evanger dog food – their other dogs showed signs of poisoning as well. After Talulah died, a necropsy was performed and it confirmed that she had died from poisoning…from her dog food.

After Talulah’s death, WJLA partnered with Ellipse Analytics to test dozens of wet dog food brands and the results are shocking, especially for the Gravy Train brand, which is made by Big Heart Pet Foods (owned by Smucker’s). Of the 15 cans tested, 60 percent came back positive for the deadly euthanasia drug – though the levels weren’t considered to be “lethal,” the law states that NO concentration is allowed in food of any sort, even for pets.

So how does a euthanasia drug wind up in pet food? A possibility, as reported by WJLA, is that euthanized pets have been added as “adulterated ingredients,” to pet food. As a result of the pet food testing, the FDA has agreed to “investigate the matter and take appropriate enforcement action.”


Of note, the Evanger pet food that was tested by WJLA and Ellipse Analytics did not reveal the presence of pentobarbital.

More from the WJLA report here.

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9 replies
  1. susispot says:

    Is this a new report on Evanger dog food? It was reported to have euth drugs found in their can food last year. I would hope it was fixed once and for all. Bummer.

  2. Linda Szymoniak says:

    I fed my dogs brands like Purina Dog Chow for years, but after finding out just what goes into them, I have become much more picky about what I feed them. I won’t use any food that says “meat” or by-products. “Meat” can contain slaughterhouse scraps, euthanized pets (they don’t even take off things like flea collars before “rendering” them and obviously use animals who were euthanized by EBI and/or heartstick). I’ve educated quite a few people I’ve met in the pet food isle at the grocery and pet stores. I hope this helps end the use of rendered dead pets as dog food.

    • Darla G says:

      I’ve tried to educate people in the pet food aisle, especially when I see them buying Ol’ Roy in Walmart – sawdust would be better than that crap.

  3. Nancy Raymond says:

    Apparently you cannot trust any dog food company – this one just killed a beloved family pet – I hope they SUE, SUE, SUE – Talulah deserved much better than to be poisoned by her dog food.


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