UPDATED California issues ‘cease and desist’ to Hemopet owner Jean Dodds for practicing without license
Update: California has confirmed that Dodds was never licensed to practice in the state. TCR is now seeking information from the California Veterinary Medical Board about next steps for Jean Dodds, including whether a criminal investigation at the state and/or federal level is under consideration. Jean Dodds has continued to decline TCR’s requests to respond to the citation, including whether she intends to contest it.
Rawlings is about to try to deliver on an idea he told TCR he’s been thinking about for more than a decade: Develop a new kind of diet for dogs on the premise that it will result in better health outcomes due to calorie restriction (already validated by a 2002 Purina study) and lower inflammatory properties (less validated, as veterinarians point out below). Once the company can validate that Landspath has an impact on health outcome with data to satisfy Trupanion’s actuaries as well as state regulators, Trupanion members whose dogs are on these diets would be eligible for discounts based on that data.
“Our mandate to the people who are formulating and creating Landspath,” Rawlings said, “not only the ingredients and the mix of ingredients, but how the food is–I don’t want to use word ‘processed’ because it’s not processed–but, how it’s taken from raw ingredients and gets to the pet owner, our goal with Landspath is for it to have the single best health outcome of any pet food ever.”
By committing to selling Landspath exclusively through veterinary channels, Rawlings stands more to gain – or lose — depending on the reaction. Trupanion has elected to sell the food exclusively through veterinary channels, thereby placing still more of a burden, and risk on its relationships with vets.
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The most frustrating part of his job, Just Food For Dogs chief medical officer Chavez says, is an “easy” question. Convincing “veterinarians,” he continues, “who have a biological education and understand physiology that real food…real chicken; real broccoli; real rice is healthier than a little ultra-processed brown ball of feed-grade kibble that is shelf-stable at room temperature for two years in a bag. You know, it’s like, ‘Oh my God, are you kidding me?’”
Mr. Buckley happily joins in the attack: “I could ask my doctor. I could ask my dentist. I could ask my chiropractor what my diet should be. And none of them would recommend a highly-processed diet and nothing fresh.”
“The mainstream veterinarian needs research and proof that real food is healthier, and that just boggles my mind,” Dr. Chavez adds. “We’re the last healthcare profession that is recommending an ultra-processed daily sustenance. It’s just crazy.”