Nestle Purina Petcare Co. has responded to allegations that its Beneful dog food is harmful, or even deadly, to pets.
A class action lawsuit was filed February 4 by a California man alleging that Purina added propylene glycol, an automotive antifreeze component, to Beneful, causing illness and death to his dogs.
The class action claims that the defendants have received more than 3,000 online complaints about their food making dogs sick throughout the past four years. In some cases, the dogs reportedly suffered internal bleeding, weight loss, dehydration and other symptoms. The suit alleges negligence, misrepresentation, product liability and unfair business practices. The plaintiff is seeking more than $5 million in damages, plus costs and fees.
In its response posted on its website, Nestle Purina says, in full:
“Beneful is a high-quality, nutritious food enjoyed by millions of dogs everyday. However, you may have heard that a class action lawsuit was recently filed in Northern California.
“As pet owners ourselves, our priority is the health and well-being of the millions of dogs who enjoy Beneful. We take these allegations very seriously and stand by our product, which is backed by Purina's strict quality controls and comprehensive food safety program.
“Unfortunately, class action suits are common these days. They are not indicative of a product issue. In fact, we've faced two such suits in the past with similar allegations. Both were found to be baseless and were subsequently dismissed by the courts.
“Adding to the confusion, social media outlets can be a source of false or incomplete information, as many other pet food brands have experienced themselves.
“We at Beneful want you, our valued customers, to know that this lawsuit is baseless; you can continue to feel confident feeding your dogs our food. We stand committed to our Brand, our products and your pets.”