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Dogs and Cats Contaminated with Toxic Synthetic Chemicals, Just Like Humans

Thursday, October 09, 2008 by: David Gutierrez, staff writer
Tags: pets, health news, Natural News


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(NaturalNews) High levels of 48 different industrial chemicals were found in household pets in a study conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG).

The group tested 20 dogs and 37 cats from a Virginia veterinary clinic, and found high levels of chemicals from mercury to fire-retardants and stain-proof coatings. According to the group, pets are particularly at risk of exposure to toxic household chemicals because they are commonly on the ground or their feet. Infants and toddlers are at similar risk, EWG said.

"We need a better system of regulating toxic chemicals in this country," said Bill Walker, EWG's vice president of West Coast operations. "We need to test the chemicals before they are allowed on the market. Our animals are trying to tell us something here."

Oakland, Calif. veterinarian Gary Richter said that the incidence of diseases linked to these chemicals has been increasing in household pets.

"There's been an increase in cancer in dogs and cats and hyperthyroidism in cats," he said. "Household toxins are concerning."

Arlene Blum, a visiting chemist at the University of California-Berkeley, echoed Richter's call for more regulation.

"Right now, it's regulation by lawsuit," she said. "We need to test chemicals before they enter the environment. And companies have no incentive to do that."

Blum believes that her cat Midnight contracted hyperthyroidism from fire retardants used in her home, and that children are at similar risk.

Due to hyperthyroidism, Midnight lost 50 percent of his weight in only six months and his kidneys failed. Blum tested Midnight, her furniture and the dust in her home and found high levels of flame retardants in all three.

"In lab animals, fire retardant was shown to cause hyperthyroidism, and quite likely that is the cause of Midnight's problems - the fire retardant in the furniture," Blum said. "What goes into our furniture goes into our dust, cats and our children. These unnecessary toxic chemicals were banned in children's clothes, but not furniture."

Sources for this story include: origin.mercurynews.com.

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