Chairman Bao is a Shih Tzu. We travel a lot. I drive. He watches. We've logged at least 10,000 miles and he's never once said, Sweetheart, don't you think you should stop and ask someone?

Monday, May 28, 2007

Oh, it was hard to tear ourselves away from the beach!

We came home on Sunday to avoid the traffic jams at the border -- it can take as long as three hours to cross on a holiday weekend. Older cars overheat and have to be dragged off to the side of the road, and there are dozens of people selling everything from tortillas to statues of the Virgin Mary, car to car. Sitting there in line waving away the little kids who want to wash the windshield, I sometimes fantasize about climbing out of the car with a bucket full of one dollar bills and just tossing them into the air. That would be fun.

Anyhow, we're home. Now to the serious stuff.

Amazingly, over 5600 pet food products have been pulled off the shelves. That is a lot of pet food, and it's still not over. It's just not making the news.

The latest theory is that the problem wasn't just the melamine, but the melamine reacting with some of the many other additives in pet food, including cyuranic acid. We tend to focus on the beloved pets who died, but there are thousands of other pets -- just as beloved -- who have survived but with lives tragically shortened by impaired liver and kidney function. In many cases, their owners probably don't even know there's a problem. How would you know, until your pet actually got sick?

Another thing you may not know (unless you live in Illinois) is that at least one person is trying to do something about this awful mess. US Senator Dick Durban says that the response of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to the crisis was "wholly inadequate" and he's organized a grass-roots email campaign in an attempt move FDA Commissioner Andrew von Eschenbach (was this another Bush appointment?) to some sort of meaningful action. Inspections of pet food manufacturers would be a nice start. Over the past three and a half years, less than one third of these establishments have been inspected! No small wonder our pets are dying!

You can help. All it takes is a couple of clicks of the mouse. Go to and click on, Take Action.

Isn't the internet wonderful?


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