Wellness has announced a voluntary recall of some canned cat food due to inadequate thiamine levels (which can cause neurologic disease). The full text of their letter follows:
February 28, 2011
Dear Pet Parents,
My name is Tim Callahan and I'm the CEO of WellPet, makers of Wellness® natural pet food. Over the years, we at WellPet have worked hard to earn the reputation of being a company that does everything possible for the pets that depend on us.
WellPet is committed to delivering the very best in pet food nutrition, as nothing is more important than the well-being of our dogs and cats. So when we found through product quality testing that specific product runs of our Wellness canned cat food might contain less than adequate levels of thiamine (also known as Vitamin B1), we decided to voluntarily recall them.
Please know, the vast majority of products tested had the appropriate levels of thiamine; however, with the number of recipes we offer, we did not want to make this more confusing. Therefore to avoid confusion and in an abundance of caution, we have decided to recall all canned cat products with the specific date codes noted below. Cats fed only product with inadequate levels of thiamine for several weeks may be at risk for developing a thiamine deficiency. If treated promptly, thiamine deficiency is typically reversible.
Though the chance of developing this deficiency is remote, withdrawing these products is the right thing to do and we are removing it from retailers' shelves.
The lots involved in this voluntary recall are:
Wellness Canned Cat (all flavors and sizes) with best by dates from 14APR 13 through 30SEP13;
Wellness Canned Cat Chicken & Herring (all sizes) with best by date of 10NOV13 and 17NOV13.
If you have cat food from these lots, you should stop feeding it to your cats. You may call WellPet at 1-877-227-9587 to arrange for return of the product and reimbursement.
No other Wellness products that your pets currently enjoy are impacted, so you can continue to feed your pets Wellness with full confidence. This is an isolated situation, as we have had only one reported issue. We are taking all the necessary steps to ensure it does not happen again.
Speaking on behalf of our entire Company, I apologize for any concerns this may have caused you. As a parent of a yellow lab named Hope, I understand the sense of responsibility we all share for our dogs and cats. Rest assured, product quality and safety will always be our top priority.
Some of you may feed Wellness and be perfectly happy with it, but it's not on my "Doctor Gayle-Approved List" because it is not tested to document nutritional adequacy but rather merely formulated to meet written criteria. Nutrient bioavailability is very much an issue when that's the case, completely apart from failing to add necessary ingredients in the first place.
I still don't recommend the company. I still see lots of urinary problems associated with their products, too.