We recently discussed the dismissal of the lawsuit by a woman who accused Dr. Pepper of false advertising for using the word “diet” after she failed to lose weight after 13 years of consumption. Now a canine version of the theory has been raised in New York where Shannon Walton is suing Blue Buffalo, a dog food company, claiming that it is misleading consumers about its dog food as “inspired by the diet of wolves.” Instead, she claims that dogs are wolfing down carbohydrates and that the closest her dog is getting to a real wolf is the picture on the package. She complains that her Tucker, a seven-year-old a Labrador-beagle mix, is diabetic and obese due to the high level of carbohydrates in the food. Warning graphic picture below.
Taking a lesson from wolves, Walton is filing a class action to get the strength of the pack of disgruntled dog owners. There seems to be many and this company has been regularly sued for its food content and advertising.
In her class action, Walton claims that the Blue Wilderness Rocky Mountain dog food is heavy on the carbs which are neither healthy for dogs nor a meaningful part of the diet of grey wolves.”
It is certainly true that wolves like this one at Denali go for caribou over carbs:
The company displays an image of a grey wolf on its products and describes its recipe as “Nature’s Evolutionary Diet.” The complaint notes that the carbs are known to be unhealthy contributors to obesity and diabetes: “Millions of dogs in the United States—the vast majority of whom eat carbohydrate-rich kibbles like the ones sold by Defendant—suffer from diabetes. But among wolves—a species that never consumes carbohydrates—there has never been a single documented case.”
While the wolf claims could be dismissed as puffery, the company does market its products as “high protein.” The company has long faced allegations of false advertising and reached a settlement a few years ago in such litigation. It settled another lawsuit in 2018. Prior litigation also raised lead contamination in the dog foot.
The company is owned by General Mills.
You can read one of the complaints here