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PetSure expresses condolences and supports call for pet food regulation review.

03 August 2021: Following the death of at least 21 dogs and the hospitalisation of 30 more across Victoria, PetSure expresses its deepest condolences to the pet parents who have lost a beloved dog. 

The recent deaths are linked to contaminated raw pet food that contained a toxin from native plants eaten by grazing animals before they were butchered. The recent cluster of deaths have been concluded to be liver disease. 

PetSure sees a number of claims for liver disease from toxicity, where pet parents could be looking at veterinary costs up to $9447, but on average cost $675 for treatment (according to PetSure data from 2019 to present). There is a long list of plants and foods that are commonly found around the home that are not safe for pets. The most common of these include lilies, sago palms, aloe vera and lantana, plus foods such as chocolate, avocado, onion, and corn on the cob. A full list can be found at the Pet Poison Helpline. 

According to PetSure’s Chief Vet Officer, Dr Dani Hoolahan, the signs of liver disease in dogs can be quite varied. They include: 

  • gastrointestinal signs like vomiting and diarrhoea and loss of appetite
  • abnormal or excessive bleeding due to the blood not clotting as it should – bruising, diarrhoea, or urine with blood
  • yellow discolouration (jaundice) of the white part of the eyes (sclera), or pink skin such as the gums, or sparsely haired locations
  • swollen abdomen
  • seizures or other changes in behaviour or mentation
  • urinating and drinking more than usual
  • weight loss

If you are concerned that your pet may be sick, always reach out to your Vet for advice.


The pet food industry is largely unregulated in Australia, as business of both pet parents and veterinary professionals, PetSure supports incentives to increase the standards of pet food through regulation of the pet food industry.

Media contact:
Ophelia Phu, BlueChip Communication
M: 0431567985
E: [email protected] 

About PetSure 

  • PetSure provides a sense of security to half a million Australian pet owners. 
  • We are three different businesses within one – a global leader in underwriting, claims processing and administration services.
  • As an insurance underwriting agency we power the pet insurance propositions of more than 30 brands, including some of Australia’s most recognizable and prestigious brands, such as IAG, AAMI, Woolworths, RSPCA, PetBarn, Guide Dogs, Medibank, Bupa and HCF.
  • As a global leader in pet insurance claims processing services we assess over half a million Australian claims each year and we are retained by leading pet insurers in the United Kingdom and the United States to provide claims processing services.
  • Administration services are our third business arm: the financial technology solution GapOnlyTM. GapOnlyTM is a paperless claims service whereby a customer can obtain claims assessment within minutes, without ever leaving the Veterinary surgery. It transforms the claims experience with less out-of-pocket expenses and is progressively rolling-out to Veterinary surgeries and hospitals Australia-wide. 
  • As an underwriter, administrator and fintech company, PetSure is helping to transform the pet experience of Australian and global pet parents, with a commitment to their lives with their pets.
  • To find out more about PetSure, please visit petsure.com.au

Any advice is general only and has not considered your personal circumstances, so may not be right for you. Cover is subject to the policy terms and conditions. You should consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or policy wording available from the relevant provider to decide if a product is right for you. Meet our providers at www.petsure.com.au/partners. Insurance products are issued by The Hollard Insurance Company Pty Ltd (ABN 78 090 584 473; AFSL 241436) and administered by PetSure (Australia) Pty Ltd (ABN 95 075 949 923; AFSL 420183) through our Authorised Representatives and our distribution partners. 

References: 

https://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/

https://www.battersea.org.uk/pet-advice/dog-care-advice/toxic-food-dogs