Category Archives: Blue Buffalo

American Nutrition

2010-09-15-Possible link-Dog food & hypercalcemia

Release Date: Wednesday, September 15 , 2010

Reports of a possible connection between hypercalcemia and a premium petfood have been reported on the Veterinary Information Network (VIN), an online community for veterinarians.

According to an article on the community’s associated site, the VIN News Service, veterinarians have mentioned in message board discussions that they have observed hypercalcemia secondary to vitamin D toxicosis in dogs eating Blue Buffalo Wilderness Diet, chicken flavor petfood. Improvements were reported once food brands were changed.

No causal relationship between the food and illnesses has yet been determined, and there is currently no Food and Drug Administration recall in effect for this brand of petfood.

Blue Buffalo representatives report that “tens of thousands of dollars” and hundreds of hours have been spent analyzing dog food, including samples from bags potentially connected to cases of dogs with hypercalcemia and vitamin D toxicity.

Richard MacLean, vice president of business affairs for Blue Buffalo, said test results thus far have shown nothing unusual about the food’s formulation.

“We really do take very seriously our commitment to providing health nutrition to pets,” MacLean said. “From the moment this issue came up, we are looking to find out if this is something we can do something about.”

MacLean also said the company’s tests of its dog food have returned low to mid-level vitamin D content.

“Everything that we have suggests that it’s not our food,” he said. “We have 30,000 bags of this stuff out there and literally a dozen animals that have a common symptom. On an incident rate, that doesn’t invite the conclusion that there’s something defective about the product.”


Blue Buffalo-General Info and Contact

Made by CJ Foods and American Nutrition

The Blue Buffalo Co.
P.O. Box 770
Wilton, CT 06897
Phone:(800) 919-2833



NOTE: 2008-09-00 As of Sept 2008, I see several consumers complaining that Blue Buffalo has a 72 hour turn around time for responding to email inquiries about their products. Also, several complaints that they never respond at all!

2010-10-12-Recall! Blue Buffalo-Disproportionate Vitamin D levels

Release Date: Tuesday, October 12 , 2010

The Blue Buffalo Co. issued a voluntary recall for three of its dry dog food products that may contain excessive amounts of Vitamin D, which could cause Hypercalcemia in dogs.

The following dog foods were recalled by Blue Buffalo: Wilderness Chicken in 4.5-pound, 11-pound and 24-pound bags, marked with “best by” dates JUL1211B, JUL1311B, JUL2611Z, JUL2711Z and JUL2811Z; Basics Salmon in 11-pound and 24-pound bags, marked with “best by” dates AUG2111B and AUG2211B; and Large Breed Adult Chicken in 30-pound bags, marked with “best by” dates SEP 22 11 P, SEP 23 11 P, and OCT 26 11 P.

The affected products were sold nationwide at pet stores, retailers and wholesale outlets. Consumers are asked to return any unused product for a refund. According to the company, 36 dogs nationwide were reported having symptoms consistent with too much Vitamin D in their systems after being fed these recipes.

Blue Buffalo Recalls Dry Dog Food Excess Vitamin D

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – October 8, 2010 – Blue Buffalo Company, Ltd., recalls certain dry dog food because of possible excess Vitamin D that can affect the health of some dogs. The Blue Buffalo Company, Ltd., is recalling certain packages of its Wilderness Chicken, Basics Salmon and Large Breed Adult Chicken dry dog foods sold under thc “BLUE” brand which have the potential to contain excessive levels of Vitamin D.

While Vitamin D is a beneficial component of these foods, the Company believes that these products may have levels of Vitamin D that are beyond the formula specifications, and has therefore chosen to withdraw them.

Dogs reacting to the higher levels of Vitamin D may show signs of lethargy or exhibit unusually frequent water consumption and urination. If your pet has consumed the recalled products and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

The affected productions of Blue Wilderness Chicken, Basics Salmon and Large Breed Adult Chicken dry dog foods were distributed nationwide through pet specialty stores.

Only these production runs of the products are involved in this recall:

Blue Wilderness Chicken Flavor dry dog food 4.5 1b “Best If Used By JUL2611Z”
“Best If Used By JUL2711Z” &
“Best If Used By JUL2811Z”
Blue Wilderness Chicken Flavor dry dog food 11 lb “Best If Used By JUL1211B”
Blue Wilderness Chicken Flavor dry dog food 24 1b “Best If Used By JUL1211B” &
“Best If Used By JUL1311B”
Blue Basics Limited Ingredient Formula Salmon and Potato Recipe dry dog food 11 lb “Best If Used By AUG2111B” &
“Best If Used By AUG2211B”
Blue Basics Limited Ingredient Formula Salmon and Potato Recipe dry dog food 24 lb “Best If Used By AUG2111B”
“Best If Used By SEP2311P” &
“Best If Used By OCT2611P”
Blue Life Protection Formula Natural Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Large Breed Adult dog food 30 lb “Best If Used By SEP2211P”
“Best If Used By SEP2311P” &
“Best If Used By OCT2611P”

No other BLUE dry or can pet foods are involved in this recall, and only the specific code dates of these products are involved.

To date there have been 36 cases nationwide of dogs reported with symptoms consistent with elevated Vitamin D in their systems while feeding on these specific productions of the products. In all cases the symptoms have subsided upon discontinuing feeding these products, with no apparent long term health consequences.

Blue Buffalo learned of this potential eondition in its products when it received reports of dogs diagnosed with high Vitamin D levels while feeding on the products from these specifie production runs. On further investigation it was learned that a sequencing error had occurred at the supplier of the dry ingredients for these products. Immediately before producing the ingredients for these specific production runs, the supplier had run a product for another customer that contained a more potent form of Vitamin D used in chicken feeds. It is now believed that there was some level of carry over of this Vitamin D product into the ingredients for the specific manufacturing runs of the BLUE products, thereby increasing the Vitamin D activity to unacceptable levels in the Blue ingredients.

Consumers who have purchased any of the products being recalled are urged to return it to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-877-523-9114 from 8 AM to 8 PM Eastern Time or visit the Company web site at for more information.


2010-10-08-BB Wilderness Chicken-Dogs around Country Sick

MSU researchers link pet food, dog illnesses nationwide

EAST LANSING, Mich. — A team of researchers at Michigan State University has discovered a group of illnesses reported in dogs across the country is linked to a specific brand of dog food from the Blue Buffalo Co.

Veterinarians from across the country recently began sending samples from dogs with elevated levels of calcium in their blood to MSU’s Diagnostic Center for Population and Animal Health, director Carole Bolin said. The sick dogs had increased thirst and urination, and some of them also suffered weight loss, loss of appetite and signs of kidney damage.

Endocrinologists with the Diagnostic Center, a service unit of the College of Veterinary Medicine, soon noticed the pattern and found a common factor: All 16 dogs whose samples were tested had very high levels of vitamin D in their blood and were fed a diet of Blue Buffalo’s Wilderness Chicken Recipe.

The diagnostic center is cooperating with the Michigan Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration on an investigation into the brand, Bolin said.

“The only reason we were able to identify the pattern is because of the vast national resource our center has become,” said Bolin, who added her lab performs more than 1.3 million tests a year. “Because of our nationwide reach and expertise, we were able to discover this and notify the proper authorities.”

It is routine for veterinarians across the country to contact the center for specialized testing to explore the causes of clinical conditions. In this specific case, all the dogs were found to have very high levels of vitamin D in their serum, a quite unusual finding. Endocrinologist Kent Refsal picked up on the pattern of cases and began to investigate.

The affected dogs ranged in age from 8 months to 8 years. There were three mixed-breed dogs and 13 purebred dogs. The samples originated from eight states: Michigan, Texas, Colorado, Wisconsin, California, Illinois, North Dakota and Utah. In addition to the testing, there was either a brief written history and/or communication with the referring veterinarian to discuss the possible sources of excess vitamin D.

Dogs seem to recover when the diet is changed, Bolin said, and there have not been any reported deaths related to the diet.

For more detailed scientific information, go to

2007-04-26-Blue Buffalo-RECALL-Can & Biscuit Products

Recall — Firm Press Release

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

Blue Buffalo Recalls Can and Biscuit Products Due To Tampering By American Nutrition Inc.

Consumer Inquiries:
Media Inquiries:
David Petrie

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Wilton, Connecticut, April 26, 2007- We at the Blue Buffalo Company have just learned that American Nutrition Inc. (ANI), the manufacturer of all our cans and biscuits, has been adding rice protein concentrate to our can formulas without our knowledge and without our approval. This is product tampering, and it apparently has been going on for some time. The can formulas that we developed, and trusted them to produce, never contained any rice protein concentrate. It appears that only an FDA investigation of ANI’s rice protein concentrate supplies forced them to reveal this product tampering to us.

While this activity by ANI is in itself unlawful, the situation is further clouded by the fact that ANI has been receiving rice protein concentrate from Wilber-Ellis, some of which the FDA has determined to be contaminated with melamine.

So while no BLUE or Spa Select canned product has tested positive for the presence of melamine, and there has been no reported illness due to any of our canned products, we simply cannot be sure of what ANI has been including in our formulas. For this reason, we have decided to remove all of our canned and biscuit products from retail distribution. While this may seem to many to be a major over-reaction, as other ANI customers will probably only recall the products that tested positive for melamine, we see this as a matter of integrity.

We founded Blue Buffalo on the principle of providing dogs and cats with the highest quality and most nutritious food, and we will not sell any product that doesn’t meet this standard. And under these circumstances, we cannot say that any products manufactured by ANI measure up.

The obvious question is “how could Blue Buffalo not know that ANI was putting rice protein concentrate into our canned food?” The answer is we trusted them. In business and in life, we all trust our partners to deal with us honestly. When we buy produce from our local grocery store, we are trusting growers, shippers and a series of handlers to have delivered a product that is safe and nutritious for our family. If any one of these parties betrays our trust, contaminated products can make their way to our dinner table.

And while we test for known toxins and contaminants, we don’t test for protein sources, like rice protein concentrate, especially when we did not formulate our products to contain them.

In the end, this all comes down to an issue of integrity, and ANI has not been honest with us and with the pet parents who buy our products. We will not put any product made by ANI on the shelf, and are temporarily withdrawing an important part of our business in order to be true to our pet parents.

We have already started the process of identifying a can and biscuit manufacturer with whom we can build a partnership based on trust. Once we have accomplished this, BLUE and Spa Select cans and BLUE Health Bars will be reintroduced with the high quality and superior nutrition that our brand stands for and that dogs and cats deserve.

We have informed our retail partners and the FDA about this action and will be cooperating with them to complete this recall quickly. The specific product involved includes all “BLUE” brand can dog foods, all “Spa Select” brand can cat foods and all “BLUE Health Bar” treats.

Consumers who have unused or partially used packages of any of these products should return them to their place of purchase for a complete refund.

All “BLUE” dry natural food for dogs and “Spa Select” dry natural foods for cats are not affected by this recall and are safe for consumption. Should consumers have a specific question, they can call the Company at 1-800-919-2833, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT, to receive more information.


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2007-04-19-RECALL-Blue Buffalo-RECALL-Spa Select Kitten Dry Food

Recall — Firm Press Release

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

Blue Buffalo Company Announces Voluntary Recall of One Production Run of Spa Select Kitten Dry Food

Consumer Inquiries:
Media Inquiries:
David Petrie

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Wilton, Connecticut, April 19, 2007 — The Blue Buffalo Company today announced a voluntary recall of one production run of its Spa Select Kitten dry food.

The recalled 3 lb. and 7 lb. bags of Spa Select Kitten dry food have the production code “BEST IF USED BY MAR 07 08 B” printed on the bag. Consumers should check this information on the bag, which is printed on the back panel below the seal.

The Company has taken this action because the rice protein concentrate used for this particular production run was obtained from Wilbur-Ellis, the same company who supplied this ingredient to Natural Balance. Test results received the evening of April 18th indicated that this rice protein concentrate tested positive for melamine. This was the only production run that used rice protein from Wilbur-Ellis.

Upon receiving the test results, the Company notified the FDA today and immediately began this recall process.

Of the 5,044 bags produced in this particular production run, the Company was able to prevent the majority from ever entering retail distribution. The Company is working closely with its retail partners and believes that most of the recalled product that had reached retail distribution has already been pulled off the shelf.

Consumers should immediately stop feeding Spa Select Kitten dry cat food with the above-listed date codes to their kittens and consult with a veterinarian if they have any health concerns with their pet.

No other cat or dog foods, canned or dry, made by the Company are affected by the recall.

Should consumers have a specific question, they can email the Company at or call 1-800-919-2833, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT, to receive more information.

Bill Bishop, CEO and President of The Blue Buffalo Company, commented “As a family owned company whose reason for being is to provide cats and dogs with the highest quality natural foods, we are extremely upset by this recall and can’t begin to apologize enough to our customers. From our perspective, it is unacceptable to produce even one bag of food with the potential to cause a pet to become ill, and we will further tighten our ingredient sourcing and quality assurance procedures as a result of this incident.”


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