VIN News tries to catch up with TCR

On Wednesday evening, VIN News published a story referencing The Canine Review’s exclusively obtained canine heart data from the FDA – failing, however, to mention TCR at any point in its report.

We’ve been here before. 

Referring inaccurately to a veterinary blog instead of to TCR as the original entity that published the FDA data, VNS stated that the blog first “posted updated figures derived from FDA documents.”

To correct the record, the blog obtained the FOIA data from TCR.

Both the FDA’s update on Dec. 23 and the update last week, although owed to our FOIA requests, would not  have been possible without the pro bono assistance of  David Schulz and the Media Freedom & Information Access Clinic at Yale Law School .

DCM is characterized by heart muscles becoming progressively weak, and therefore less able to pump blood.

We recognize that neither the publisher nor the writers at VNS come from a mainstream journalism background or have professional journalism experience with the exception of one reporter we know of. However, we think it’s reasonable to expect an outlet – any outlet – to follow the most basic rules of the road, which include attributing credit to the publication (in this case, TCR) that first obtained and published the information.

For example, here’s The Washington Post’s policy regarding attribution (and notice how we’re also linking to them because we’re citing their work):


We must be truthful about the source of our information. Facts and quotations in a story that were not produced by our own reporting must be attributed. Attribution of material from other media must be total. Plagiarism is not permitted. It is the policy of this newspaper to give credit to other publications that develop exclusive stories worthy of coverage by The Post.

FDA FOIA documents and communications below:

Much more reporting on these documents to come.


Exclusive: FDA releases diet-associated dog DCM case reports via FOIA after two-year battle