Dog owners who purchased certain Diamond Pet Foods products in 2005 may be entitled to payment from a $3.1 million legal settlement resulting from a recall that was issued in December 2005.
Pet owners who purchased the recalled dog food are eligible to receive compensation if they live in one of the 22 states or District of Columbia where the food was distributed and if the products purchased were not previously returned for a refund. In addition, consumers are entitled to any veterinary expenses that were incurred from dogs who ate the recalled pet food.
Per the settlement agreement, Diamond Pet Food denies any wrongdoing.
The recall was issued after aflatoxin was discovered in several of the company’s pet food products manufactured at a facility in Gaston, S.C. Aflatoxin is a naturally occurring toxic chemical byproduct produced when fungus grows on corn and other crops, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The FDA states its Center for Veterinary Medicine received 23 reports of dog deaths from pet owners whose dogs ate the recalled food.
The recalled pet food was distributed under the brand names Diamond and Country Value in Alabama, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Dog owners who think they are eligible for payment must submit a claim form, which is available online at www.recalledpetfoodsettlement.com. The deadline to submit a claim is April 15, 2008.
Dog owners who do not want to be bound by the terms of the agreement – which excuses Diamond Pet Foods from all future litigation – must submit a request for exclusion by March 16, 2008.