First, for pity's sake, don't say 'when will these recalls end?!'. This drives me crazy. It's food manufacturing, and as long as there are human beings who make mistakes and organic materials that grow bacteria, there will be recalls.
I manage a small feed/pet supply store. The couple who founded my store also founded Natura Pet Foods, and to this day those foods are our bread and butter.
A few weeks ago, they had a small recall. Salmonella found in one bag of cat food, and they decided to pull everything from that production period. Not good, but not a big deal. We pulled a dozen or so affected bags and sent them back. A few days later, a second wave of recalls...several dozen bags of food pulled. Hmm, we were out of a few good things, but again, we could cope.
This morning, I went to our 8:30am meeting and we griped about how slowly Natura was getting us restocked.
I checked my fax machine at 10:00, and found a third wave of recall. We had to pull EVERY. SINGLE. BAG. of dry dog and cat food and treats from our five best selling pet foods. Even though salmonella in pet food is REALLY not a huge deal, people are SPAZZING OUT. We literally have 1 1/2 aisles of empty shelves.
I made up a poster with a list of high quality foods that would be effective substitutes for the affected brands, but people love their pets like family and are VERY upset by the entire thing...and many of them are taking it out on my staff and me. I stopped by one of my other favorite local pet stores on the way home today, and the owner and I traded whines and consolation for awhile.
This weekend is going to be a NIGHTMARE. By a happy coincidence, I tweaked the schedule this week so that myself and both of my assistant managers have one weekend day off. If I can survive tomorrow, I've got two days to recover. What a mess.
On a related note: if anyone here feeds Innova, EVO, California Natural, Healthwise, or Karma dry dog/cat/ferret food/treats, stop and return the bag. Or contact Natura for a refund.
Also be kind to the folks at the pet store, they're NOT having a good weekend!
Having an aisle of empty shelves is never good, but for a small shop (vs. a PetCo, PetsMart, corporate owned or franchised store) this is a HUGE deal. I'm sorry this happened to you.
I'm sure you have thought of diversifying. Here again, with a small shop it is tough to do; first, you don't have the space and second you get the better deals from the brands by buying bulk and selling alot of their product.
I had a huge screaming match with the manager of our local PetCo a bit over a year ago -- first, I did know it was a PetCo and not a small shop, second, her attitude to having the "Made in China" chicken jerky treats was so cavalier and uninformed I was just tipped over the balance.
Your post is a good reminder to all, the employees are not the ones causing the recalls.
Lucky for me, I have been diversifying since I took over the manager position. We've brought in Blue, Blue Wilderness, Taste of the Wild, Tuscan Naturals, and we're bringing in Nulo sometime this month. So we're not totally hosed, just in for a rough ride. I suspect we will run out of Tuscan Naturals and Natural Balance this weekend. Maybe we'll sell the last of the Wellness I've been trying to get rid of!
And China-made jerky, ugh! People threw such a FIT when we got rid of Dogswell treats, and they were always stunned to learn that they are made in China. Yucky.
I had an incident at Petsmart over the Christmas holidays - bought 2 kinds of treats for Myndi - same company (distributor), but one was made in the U.S. and the other in China. As soon as I got them home I noticed the difference, so the next day I took the China made back to the store. They gave me no issue about returning it, and when the clerk asked why I was returning and I told her, she looked at me like I had 2 heads - or worse.
Don't these places care what they sell? It's a shame that it all has to be on the consumer to check and double check, and the stores don't care what they sell (as long as it isn't a recalled product), and as long as it brings in a profit.
You can bet that I check and double check every treat or food that I buy for my dog. I won't even buy toys that are made in China...might be paying more for the ones made at home but I don't have to worry about what they're made of. I don't buy any food for us if they have China on the label and I'm amazed at how much stuff does come from China.
As for recalls I don't flip out because mistakes happen no matter how careful people try to be. I've never had any trouble getting my money back if I return whatever--- sometimes I don't bother but just trash it.
I feed raw so whatever dry food I buy is only used for extra or treats and to be sure my dog will eat it if something should happen to me and that someone has to care for her ( heaven forbid) and feed her dry food.
I'm sorry to hear that you have to go through this once again. I never put the blame on the pet store employees. They should pull recalled items off of the shelves. When the canned Wellness cat food was voluntarily recalled several years ago, I still continued to buy their products even after the recall. I not only got my money back but I also received a large stack of coupons for future canned cat food.:)
I currently feed all of my cats Merrick's Before Grain dry but now I've received some coupons about a newer version of it that's even higher in protein. If they end up replacing my cats current dry food with this newer version then I'll need to look for another different dry cat food.:( Alani & Blaze can't eat food too high in protein because it's too rich for them and they get diarrhea. It would also probably be much higher in price. I looked up Tuscan Naturals and this could be a good alternative for my cats if I need to switch. Thanks for the info.:)
I buy all my dog food at a locally owned pet store. I know the people there and trust they will keep me informed - that's why I go there. If I went in and didn't find my regular food, one of the staff, who know me, will work with me to find something that will substitute. I LOVE my small pet shop and the staff. May pay a little bit higher price - but you get what you pay for. My dogs haven't been sick since I started going there.
I think in a lot of the recalls its because the people handling the food get sick, dogs run hotter than us. And as a grandmother of toddlers I have a hard time keeping them out of the dog food they are fascinated.