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News Article

Study looks at parabens in pet foods, urine

Paraben levels higher in cat food than in dog food

Llittle is known about the sources and pathways of exposure to chemicals in pets. A recent study published in Environmental Science & Technology, determined the concentrations of parabens in commercially available cat and dog foods as well as in urine samples from these pets collected from the Albany area of the state of New York in the United States. Parabens are preservatives commonly found in cosmetic and pharmaceutical products, and their use in human food products and dog and cat food is regulated by the US Food & Drug Administration. Parabens have been shown to be endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDCs) and potentially interfere with hormones and have harmful effects on developmental, reproductive and neurological systems. Although previous studies have examined the presence of other EDCs, such as heavy metals and bisphenol A, in pet food, very little is known about the presence of parabens.

The mean concentrations of total parabens (sum of parabens and their metabolites) in dog (n = 23) and cat (n = 35) food were 1350 and 1550 ng/g fresh wt, respectively. Dry food contained higher levels of parabens and their metabolites than wet food; cat food had higher paraben concentrations than dog food. The mean concentrations of total parabens found in dog (n = 30) and cat (n = 30) urine were 7230 and 1040 ng/mL, respectively. In both pet food and urine, MeP (among parabens) and 4-hydroxy benzoic acid (4-HB) (among metabolites) were the dominant compounds.

Calculation of the cumulative exposure intake for the dogs and cats examined led to the conclusion that dogs are exposed to other sources of parabens, besides food, whereas cats' exposure is mainly from their diet. The researchers also noted that to their knowledge, this is the first time the occurrence of these substances has been reported in pet food and urine in the United States.

Parabens and Their Metabolites in Pet Food and Urine from New York State, United States. R Karthikraj, S Borkar, S Lee, K Kannan. Environmental Science & Technology, published online 7 March 2018, doi: 10.1021/acs.est.7b05981

Article details

  • Date
  • 12 March 2018
  • Source
  • American Chemical Society
  • Subject(s)
  • Veterinary medicine