Fetch By The Dodo insurance announces vet advisors one year after calling vet professionals “moral hazard”
Fetch By The Dodo, the pet insurer also known as “Petplan,” has announced a new board of veterinary advisors, delivering on a pledge it made nearly one year ago after calling veterinary professionals a “moral hazard” in state insurance filings which TCR unearthed and reported exclusively, subsequently igniting a social media firestorm. TCR discovered the […]
USA Today ambushes Seresto again with dubious story, failing to seek comment
After USA Today reported, falsely, that Elanco had covered up adverse event reports and withheld them from regulators, rather than issue a correction, Mr. Hettinger and USA Today simply deleted the story’s most significant paragraph. In fact, there was even a “Why This Story Matters” graphic, also removed.
It was an egregious enough violation of the company’s own corrections policy to warrant an FYI to Newsguard, a fact-checking company. Fortunately for Gannett, this reporter’s father is Newsguard’s co-CEO- -and because of that, Newsguard determined that the risk for perception of conflict outweighed the need for them to downgrade Gannett’s rating, at least for now. However, TCR’s reporting shows what now amounts to more than two years of egregious violations of the most basic journalism standards. Note: This is a great newstip for a media reporter.
AVMA bungles DCM story, joining parade of misinformation
On Monday, February 7, misinformation about animal health came from a surprising source: the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).
“FDA to end updates on dilated cardiomyopathy and grain-free food,” AVMA writer Coco Lederhouse’s headline declared. She explained that, the FDA had decided that the reports “do not supply sufficient data to establish a causal relationship with reported product(s).” In other words, the reports don’t indicate that there’s a problem, so the FDA is no longer going to provide new reports.
Coincidentally, on the same day of the AVMA’s story, preeminent veterinary nutritionist Lisa Freeman at Tufts updated her highly regarded Petfoodology blog with an article that makes the best case possible for the urgent need for these records to be updated consistently and made public.
The AVMA’s press officers declined to provide contact information for Ms. Lederhouse, whose name is in the byline of the AVMA story. TCR contacted president Lori Teller, chief veterinary officer Gail Golab, head of policy Isham Jones, and four different press aides at least twice each over a three day period for comment regarding the erroneous story and did not receive any response.
“Terrorizing the pet industry”
Last month marked three years since we began our drive to bring greater accountability and transparency to the pet industry through our high impact, public interest journalism. We have a long way to go, but we’re off to a strong start. Last week, Business Insider noticed – writing that TCR is “terrorizing the pet industry.” […]
The Making – and Unmaking — of Forbes’s Insurance Rankings
The Making – and Unmaking — of Forbes’s Insurance Rankings Forbes Misfires, Takes Down 2022 Pet Insurance Rankings In September of 2022, an obscure pet health insurance company called Embrace, which holds less than 10 percent of the marketshare in the U.S. according to an industry research firm, began to celebrate a major endorsement […]
Petplan, Dodo officially withdraw veterinary professional “moral hazard” filing
In July, The Canine Review reported that Petplan which had recently partnered with Group Nine Media and rebranded itself as “Fetch by The Dodo,” was seeking to slash veterinary professionals from pet health insurance coverage by declaring them a “moral hazard.” Our reporting resulted in sharp and extensive outcry from veterinary professionals and influencers on […]
Questions readers have been asking lately UPDATED April 2023
Is it true that TCR bans the use of the term “investigative journalism” ?
Yes. It’s redundant. A journalist’s job is to investigate.
The term is a product of a new phenomenon born out of digital communication or journalism by email, Tweet, etc. which is intended to distinguish actual reporting from what most ‘reporting’ is now, in the post-Internet age. Woodward and Bernstein were not “investigative journalists.” Bob Woodward was a cub reporter on the metro desk assigned to cover a local burglary, Watergate. Woodward would be the first to say – and does say – that journalism is about showing up and outworking every person around you. All journalism demands showing up and being a surrogate for your readers.
Dodo partner Petplan calls veterinary professionals “moral hazard”
Last Friday, we reported that pet health insurer Petplan — now rebranded as “Fetch by the Dodo” to reflect its new partnership with The Dodo, the animal-loving viral video blog – had started rolling out an exclusion in its policy that slashes coverage options for veterinary professionals. Now we can report that the insurer explained the move by declaring veterinary professionals a “moral hazard/fraud [risk]” in the cover letter of the filing we reported last week.
Media elites behind Dodo, NYMag, Vox stay silent as insurance partner Petplan slashes discounted coverage for vet professionals
Why Would Petplan Slash Coverage For Veterinary Professionals?
Are veterinary professionals not the people a pet insurance provider would want on its good side for client referrals? Actuary data shows that veterinary professionals tend to adopt “what we consider ‘lemons’ as their companions,” explained Margi Tooth, the President of Trupanion, a Petplan competitor which does not have the same exclusion. “What this inevitably means,” she added, “is that their pets have a higher rate of utilization that the average pet owner. There’s no conspiracy here – it’s a profession that can’t face putting a pet to sleep that could be saved – so when an owner walks in with a sick pet that they can’t afford to treat, they’re often adopted by the team in the hospital. These folks are heroes on many levels.”
Seresto Under Siege on Capitol Hill as ‘Investigative Reporter’ and Dems Team Up, Renewing Calls to Recall ‘Killer’ Collars
The blockbuster Seresto flea-and-tick collar was skewered by lawmakers yesterday, who renewed their calls for parent company Elanco Animal Health, Inc. to pull the collars from shelves during a hearing held by the House Committee on Oversight & Reform, Subcommittee on Economic & Consumer Policy. The hearing, whose title was “Seresto Flea and Tick Collars: […]