Litigation commenced March 28th, 2007 and since then five or six class actions have been filed in Canada. "In Ontario you just need one plaintiff to represent a group of people and our class is defined as all persons in Canada who purchased the recalled pet food and fed it to their animals," says Strosberg. He believes that thousands of pet owners will qualify. Of hundreds of calls Strosberg has already received, almost 50% said their pets died.
"We will do our best to push this action forward as quickly as possible - a judge has been assigned to case manage this class action," Strosberg adds. As for how long it will take, that mainly depends on how much time Menu Foods requires to prepare their materials.
READ MORE LEGAL NEWSMenu Foods has stated that it will pay vet bills. "I was on their website and there is a qualifier - you have to prove that harm was connected with their food - at this point we don't know what proof they need," he says. "The real question is what the pet owners will have to prove; I have no idea yet but the fact is that we have commenced the class action and our position will be that any offer to pay any expenses must be done with court oversight."
The Menu Foods recall may just be the tip of the iceberg when it comes to regulating pet food. "I think that when an industry demonstrates that it can't regulate itself the government should step in," says Strosberg. "It is surprising and worrisome and I think this incident will likely bring awareness to animal rights in general."
To Pet Food Owners: If your pet has suffered kidney failure as a result of eating any foods recalled by Menu Foods, Strosberg advises that you call his office with the following information: where the food was purchased, type of food and any vet bills. Retain medical records and keep notes of what happened and when. If possible, keep any food packaging.