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May 22, 2012

I am desperate to find assistance with this matter and am finding legal counsel on behalf of an animal poisoned by tainted recalled food.

My feline at home has become one of the only animals in the country to fall ill with the salmonella virus found in the latest food recall of the Taste of the Wild food. 

Below are excerpts from letters I have written to both the food company and the pet store that sold the tainted food:

I am writing to follow up on Taste of the Wild, Case #22345, involving my cat and the illness brought on by ingestion of the recalled Taste of the Wild food.

I purchased a small bag of Taste of the Wild feline on Friday, May 4 from Maine Pet and Aquarium, 47 Downeast Highway, Ellsworth, ME 04605.   I noticed that all of the Taste of the Wild food had been removed from the shelves….when I asked where and why, I was told by the male clerk that there “had been a fire at the factory”.  
I then asked if there was a comparable food as my cat has a grain allergy-  I was told then that the Taste of the Wild cat food was “okay” and they produced a bag.  On Saturday afternoon, May 5, I noticed my cat suffering from severe diarrhea.  On Sunday, May 6, his appetite began to decrease.  By Wednesday, May 9, his appetite was almost nothing.  On Thursday, May 10, he was no longer drinking and had ceased to eat completely and had become lethargic.  I took him to my veterinarian that evening, May 10…Oceanside Animal Hospital.  I was told that normally, salmonella does not affect small animals but because my cat suffers from chronic respiratory disease, his immune system was already compromised and he was unable to fight off the salmonella.  He was given a shot of steroid to help with the breathing issues that had become overwhelming from the stress and then placed on a run of antibiotics (azithromycin) where he seemed to gain strength for a couple of days then returned to lethargy.   It is unknown at this time if we will be able to pull him out of this illness as the salmonella may have taxed his system to the point where he is unable to fight his respiratory disease.    

As you well know from a variety of medical and psychological articles, pets have become part of the family.  And for a single, childless 54-year old like myself, the relationship goes even deeper.  I have worked with animals for over twenty years and have seen many pass away in that time…but to watch your own waste away is truly unbearable.  Especially when it could have been prevented by removal of the tainted food.

I spoke with the Taste of the Wild Company, who checked the product code on the bag of food then directed me to return the food to the pet store.  They also informed me that it was both canine and feline foods that had been recalled, not just canine.  When I came back in to exchange the food on the evening of the 10th, with my cat in the car, the female clerk not only argued the validity of my claim but became a bit belligerent with me then took the food.  To the food company, thank you for being upfront.  To the pet store, when there is a recalled article, it should be announced and not covered up with a lie like, “there was a fire at the factory”.  Because of your fear of reporting the truth, my cat may very well lose his life.

I am now to the point where I have submitted receipts and my veterinarian has submitted a letter to the pet food company of his findings.   I really don't have the money for an attorney so I am hoping that someone out there might be able to send this to an attorney that would be willing to take on this case against the food company, with their salary coming out of any restitution.  I have called all of the attorneys in my local phone and some online, all to which replied, "I'm sorry, we don't handle animal cases."

PLEASE HELP.   You or an attorney willing to help may contact me at 


Nelia A. Lake

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Posted: Tuesday May 22, 2012, 9:25 am
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Fred Hoekstra (6572)
Tuesday May 22, 2012, 9:58 am

File formal complaints with the Consumer Protection Agency of the Maine State Attorney:

Phone: 207-626-8800

As well as the Federal Trade Commission:

1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357)

I never play Games with Companies who are in the Wrong, but who could care less. You will get your Money and they will get their Fines.


Nelia Lake
female, age 57, single
Ellsworth, ME, USA
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