During Investigate Midwest’s continuing probe of Seresto pet collars and deaths and injuries to dogs and cats linked to the collar, which repel and kill pests, reporters Johnathan Hettinger of Investigate Midwest and Emily LeCoz of USA Today were puzzled by the lack of response from veterinarians after the stories were published. With support from the Fund, the reporters kept digging and found that vets had collected at least $126 million from sales of the collars. They also unearthed allegations of price-fixing and other questionable practices that prevented vets from selling other, less expensive brands. These deals are often tied to lucrative financial incentives for vets, such as discounts and rebates. The reporters’ research led them to a lawsuit from a competitor that alleged that Bayer, which previously owned the company, blocked competition, harming consumers who were unable to find cheaper versions of the collars. Even today, the competition is not available at many of the biggest pet specialty stores, like PetSmart or Petco and they’re absent from popular online pet stores like Chewy.com or PetMed Express, the reporters found.