Wheat Ridge, Colo - Lawyers with The Animal Law Center announce today that settlement has been reached between Pfizer Incorporated (NYSE: PFE), the manufacturer of the drug Rimadyl, and Boulder guardians who lost their dog Sophie after she was given the drug. The settlement terms are being withheld as part of the agreement.
“This victory underscores what has been known for some time now,” said Jennifer Edwards, founder and attorney with The Animal Law Center. “While this drug can be beneficial for certain dogs, for many it has been a deadly prescription. More research on Rimadyl is needed to prevent animals from needlessly dying.”
“We are very pleased with the outcome,” said Chris Cooper. “We plan to use our settlement funds to launch an education campaign that will inform pet owners about the risks associated with this medication.”
Cooper plans to distribute pamphlets and other educational materials to area veterinary clinics and other retail locations where dog owners would find the information.
In May of 2009, Sophie’s guardians, Shelley Smith and Christopher Cooper took Sophie to a Longmont veterinarian for treatment of a cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) rupture. Following the surgery, the veterinarian prescribed several medications, including Rimadyl, which is an anti-inflammatory drug. Eleven days after surgery, Sophie began experiencing symptoms described by two Pfizer veterinarians as Rimadyl toxicity. Both corporate vets suggested hospitalization for the animal and that Sophie should recover from the toxicity within 3 to 7 days. Following a 13-day stay at the hospital, Sophie was released to the care of Smith and Cooper. But her suffering continued.
On July 9, 2009, Sophie was admitted to the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital for a laparoscopic liver biopsy and esophageal tube placement for tube feeding. Test results exhibited severe liver degradation. After several trips back and forth to CSU for treatment, Sophie died on July 26, 2009.
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