Costco/Kirkland Dog Food Killed My Dog!

On November 11, 2012 we bought a bag of Kirkland Healthy Weight dog food instead of the regular Kirkland Mature dog food which we regularly use. The bag of Healthy Weight was grabbed inadvertently, but we did not think there was a problem and decided to use it anyway. On the evening of November 12th, our adult son, Andrew who was staying with us while he was in transition, opened the bag of Healthy Weight to feed his French bulldog (Molly). The next morning, Molly was very sick; she was throwing up and had diarrhea. Andrew did not tell us Molly was sick at the time; he thought the illness occurred because of the switch from her regular food. This is the only night he fed his dog from our food as he bought her regular brand the following day.

We had another bag of Kirkland Mature dog food that we were finishing off, so our dogs were not fed from the bag of Kirkland Healthy Weight dog food until the evening of November 13th. The next morning (November 14th), all of the dogs were vomiting and had diarrhea. By this time, our oldest dog, Percival also had exaggerated joint pain and stiffness. We assumed the illness may have been caused by switching from the Kirkland Mature dog food to the new Healthy Weight bag. We fed once more the following evening from the Kirkland Healthy Weight bag of dog food. On the morning of the 15th, our dogs were still very sick and refused to eat their breakfast so Mr. Powell went back to Costco on his way home from work and picked up our regular Kirkland Mature Dog food.

By November 16th, we learned about Molly’s illness and became convinced that the Healthy Weight dog food was making them ill. We took the bag of Kirkland Healthy Weight back to our local Costco warehouse. Amber Hov (in Customer Service) took the bag and refunded our money. Our sons dog and two of our dogs seemed to be improving; however, our third dog Bryna, was not improving and, in fact, seemed to be getting worse. She was a nursing mother with 4 week old pups. Because she was still feeling sick, we did not allow her to nurse her pups that evening and decided that I would take her to the Vet the next morning.

The morning of November 17th, Bryna was still very sick and weak. Her head was swollen and she had dropped weight so we took her to the veterinarian, who informed us that her kidneys were failing. Bryna was immediately admitted to the veterinarian hospital where she stayed until November 21st. Upon her release, we were told that Bryna would not live more than two months; she died on December 19th, (approximately one month after eating the contaminated dog food).

November 25th, we filed a “Report of Incident” with Costco and told managers what had happened with our dogs. Our claim was opened on December 4, 2012; we spoke with Costco representatives and I released Bryna’s veterinarian records for the Costco representatives to review.

We were offered a Costco Gift Card for $100 if we would close the case at that time. We were also told that there have been no recalls on any of the Kirkland dog foods since 2008; however, after conducting our own research, we found numerous complaints and recalls involving dog food sold at Costco and other retailers who use Diamond Corporation to make their brand dog food between 2008 and 2012. And all 2010 through 2012 claims had the same indications and symptoms displayed by our dogs.

On the day before he left for Christmas vacation, Costco representative contacted us and asked for the veterinarian records that we had already previously submitted. He also asked us to dig up Bryna’s body for an autopsy. We immediately called our Veterinarian’s office to determine if the records had been released. We were told the records were faxed “a couple of weeks ago” and agreed to fax them over again.

Later that morning, Costco representative called and told us that he had spoken our Vet, and claimed that our Vet had stated that it could not have been the dog food that caused our dog’s illness. Because of this allegation he was closing our case but, since we had been such good Costco customers, we were again offered a Costco Gift Card.

We immediately called our Vet and he denied telling Costco representative that the dog food did not cause our dog’s death. Our Vet stated that he informed the Costco rep of the fact that Bryna’s kidneys were destroyed from a toxin that was introduced to her, but there was no way to prove where the toxin came from because Costco took the bag of dog food and there was no sample to be tested. Also, it had been too long to diagnose the other dogs. Our Vet did state that, since all four of our dogs got sick after eating the food, and all stayed sick for several days after eating it, he was highly suspicious that it was the dog food that caused their illness.

Our Vet also stated the only thing an autopsy would prove was that Bryna’s death occurred because her kidneys were destroyed, but the toxin would have already worked its way out of her system. Our family had already suffered through the trauma of losing our dog, and the idea of digging her up for an autopsy that would not prove anything, was unacceptable. However, if it would help our case and Costco wants to exhume the body and pay for the autopsy, they may do so as long as they agree to return and re-inter the body. However, the Costco representative told us that if we want to proceed with this claim, it will be necessary for us to do so through Diamond Corporation’s Attorney. I would respectfully like to point out that the Kirkland name is branded on the dog food, therefore we feel that this claim is Costco’s responsibility.

We feel Costco representatives have not been very sympathetic about the death of Bryna, and the rep that we were dealing with seemed to just want to get the case closed (the case was closed on January 2, 2013). Costco rep claimed it was not Costco’s policy to take dog food back and that the bag of food in question was returned to us. In fact, that is not the case. We purchased another bag of Kirkland Mature dog food, but after we realized our dogs had been poisoned, we did not want to further risk their health. Therefore we returned that bag also. The bag returned to us was the Kirkland Mature dog food, not the Healthy Weight dog food that had poisoned our dogs. We have bought ALL of our dog food at Costco for the past decade; we spent over $2,000 last year alone on Kirkland brand dog foods. After showing this kind of loyalty, I am upset by the treatment and lack of concern on Costco’s part.

This review is a subjective opinion of a user.
Report Comment Private message author

More Review Details

Reason of review:
Poor customer service
Monetary loss:
Product or service
Dog Food
Review category
Pet Stores
review #399748 by
Had an experience with Costco? Submit review ›
Helpful? 139 Yes 139 302 No 302
Had the same issue 93 Yes 93
Comment as anonymous As anonymous or Log in
OR Is it your business? Respond to your
customers as verified company representative.
Apply for a Free Plan

Sep 07 #1209313 Homestead, Florida

absolute bs .. my dogs have been on Kirkland brand for eight years, no problems ..remember food change must be gradual..
destroy kidneys ?? sounds congenital and coincidental ..

0 0 Reply

Mar 03 #1121591

Our dogs also got very ill in November 2014 after we opened a new bag of Kirkland dog food, and fed to our dogs. @e also contacted Costco - they gave us the same run around. They sent us $25 gift card, but we had over $1500 in vet bills AND almost lost 2 senior dogs.

1 0 Reply

Mar 03 #1121660

Contact Attorney Jeffrey Berman from Anderson & Wanca. 847-368-1500 or email him at for details on other cases and likely another Class-Action suit.

1 0 Reply

Feb 12 #1110926 Minneapolis, Minnesota

Why did you wait to wait 5 days to seek help from a Vet?? Bad food or not, you should have taken then in immediately for help. They seem to have suffered far longer than necessary. Next time save the dog food, leave Costco alone and save you pups lives!!

8 6 Reply

Mar 03 #1121675 Burleson, Texas

This is Caroline, the original poster: Obviously we had never dealt with anything like that before. Two feedings, everyone is sick. We take the bag back to the store to tell them what happened, they confiscate the bag and give us the money back. We think that there is no further issue at that point and that everyone would get better after no longer feeding from that bag. No one would have guessed that it would have killed our dog after only 2 feedings. You can't say what YOU WOULD HAVE DONE until you have to deal with the same situation. The point in bringing my story to the world is in hopes that you NEVER have to deal with anything like this and if you do, that you remember my story and save a sample and get your dog in right away. Obviously, knowing what we know now, we would have acted differently.

2 3 Reply

Sep 07, 2015 #1030897

Why would you return the dog food instead of keeping it for a sample? Or at least return it and keep some of it as a sample.
That's the dumbest thing I've ever heart.

3 6 Reply

Aug 27, 2015 #1025933
to start with and there is a lot more where those came from!

4 0 Reply

Aug 27, 2015 #1025929 Burleson, Texas

Hi, this is Caroline, the original poster of the article and I also posted about the upcoming law suit. Do not send me your personal info. It will soon be announced what attorney office to contact directly. Please check back for updates for those who have lost their pets or their pets were made sick from this pet food.

5 1 Reply

Jul 18, 2015 #1009071 Morganton, North Carolina


8 0 Reply

Jul 13, 2015 #1006800

My family's Havachon died from the Kirkland dog food too in November of 2014 and one of our Japanese Chins was sick from the same things in December of 2014 but, we took her straight to the emergency vet the same night that she threw up.

8 0 Reply

Aug 25, 2015 #1024763

FYI: There is a CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT against Diamond Pet Food Corp, I had a meeting with an attorney today who flew down here from Chicago and came to my home (in Texas) to meet with me. Costco/Kirkland dog food killed my precious Bryna girl (pictured below). For any of you who ever used ANY food made by Diamond which includes, (mainly the Costco/Kirkland brands), Tractor Supply 4 Health or Taste of the Wild or any other of the Diamond brands that were produced out of the Meta, MO plant which serves: AR, CO, IL, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, OK, NE, PA, SD, TN, TX & WI. If your dog got sick, even if you did not have to get Vet attention, You can be included in the Class Action. If your dog got sick & you have Vet bills or if you lost your dog to this toxic dog food, you can recover damages for the value of your dog and Vet bills. Please contact me & I will get you all of the contact info for the lawyer or just send me your contact info saying that you want to be included in the Class Action & I will forward your information to the law firm that will handle this case. Once everything gets started, I can make his contact info public. Right now, please contact privately for the beginning stages of this case.

4 4 Reply

May 17, 2015 #985482

8 0 Reply

Feb 06, 2015 #941908 Downingtown, Pennsylvania

So sorry for your loss . I am experiencing same issues for 3 out of my 7 dogs....starting on Monday it one dog, TUesday another dog, now last night my third dog. Lethargy, vomiting, blood in vomit, diarrhea with blood, blood work all messed up due to sever GI inflammation. Needed VEt care, meds, sub Q fluids etc...... clearly the common denominator is the new bag of food that was just opened a week ago my crew. Will be taking samples, and returning back to COstco with my experience and concerns. My dogs have been using same brand for 3 years, no problems until this week. The brand I used was KIrkland SIgnature Healthy weight CHicken and Vegetables.
Again, I am so sorry for the loss of your beloved baby. My heart goes out to your family.

9 0 Reply

Feb 09, 2015 #943114 Dallas, Texas

Keep a sample of the food and also, see if you can get lab work done. There are enough cases to get another class action suit filed or to get in on the one that was won last September. Report the problem to Costco but if your experience is like mine, Costco will not care. They may offer you a $100 gift card if you file a claim though! Very sad! Hope your dogs all get better fast!

6 1 Reply
Tiberius Gracchus

Feb 05, 2015 #941319 Reno, Nevada

Buy dog food that was sourced and produced entirely in the USA or you will probably get garbage from China.
They are required to state the origin -- but be sure it was not just packaged in the US, but also that all ingredients originated from here, too. The food will cost more, but is worth it.
There are a number of web sites that list these brands -- we use Halo for our dog.

3 1 Reply

Feb 05, 2015 #941435 Dallas, Texas

I have since found out about Orijen Dog Food. The best I have found so far but pricey!

3 0 Reply

Dec 14, 2015 #1078569 Edmonton, Alberta

Try Acana Dog Foods too. I work for the Company that makes Orijen and Acana (Champion Petfoods). Acana is 60% protein and Orijen is 80% protein. Acana is just as good as Orijen (quality fresh local ingredients), but is a little less expensive because of the lower protein content. 60% is still very high - most "premium" dog foods have 40% or less. Thanks, Chris

1 0 Reply

Feb 26, 2015 #951144

My 2 Chi/MinPin/ESS Mix dogs started on HALO Spot's Stew Wholesome Chicken Recipe for small breeds in May 2014. On December 24, 2014 we purchased a bag at the same Petco store where we always purchased it. It was a few days later when we opened that bag and started using it. That day, one of them threw up her food. The next day, the other dog threw up her food. For the next several days, one or both threw up at some point during the day. Neither had diarrhea or lethargy. The last day we ever gave them this food, one of my dogs threw up several times. I tried to get a vet appointment to get her checked but they couldn't see me until the next day. I put them both on rice & chicken to see if it would settle their stomachs and neither got sick again. I transitioned them to a new food and all has been well. Our vet agrees that it must have been a bad bag of food. We notified Petco. They said no one else had complained but we don't trust Halo anymore.

4 0 Reply

Feb 26, 2015 #951147

We have contacted Halo and still have the leftover food should they request some. We will also keep a sample for ourselves.

3 0 Reply

Jan 14, 2015 #931378 Clinton, Maryland

I'm so sorry about your dog. Costco should be ashamed as all the people that responded negative about you. I'm not one that approves of breeding because there's so many animals that die in shelters everyday. That aside, there should be some compassion for the loss of your love one and the sickness of the others. I will not renew my membership with them, because they are heartless and I will shop elsewhere.

5 2 Reply

1-20 of 104 comments

Great comment! Would you like to convert it into review?

You will be able to edit the text before publishing.

× You are about to contact

Review submitted through "Contact Us" will not get published on the site or forwarded to Costco. However, many companies do monitor reviews on our site.

You were reading a complaint about Costco.
Filing a new complaint about