After thousands of reported illnesses and 1,000 dog deaths, PetSmart and Petco have announced they will stop selling all dog and cat treats made in China.
What took the retailers so long to reach the decision, and why it will take them seven to ten months more to purge store shelves of such items, remain questions worth asking.
So too is why the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which has been investigating the treats for years — without determining what about them is making dogs sick — can’t tell us much more than “CAUTION,” with an exclamation point.
PetSmart said it will pull from the shelves all of the China-made treat it sells by March 2015.
Petco said it will accomplish that by the end of this year.
Both retailers have about 1,300 stores nationwide.
The two national pet retailers’ decisions came after seven years of complaints to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration about jerky treats from China making pets sick, or worse.
“We know some pet parents are wary of dog and cat treats made in China, especially chicken jerky products, and we’ve heard their concerns,” said Jim Myers, Petco CEO, in a statement.
A PetSmart spokesperson, meanwhile, told USA Today it has been working toward this goal “for some time, and feel it’s the right thing to do for pets and our customers.”
Taking questionable Chinese-made treats off the shelves strikes us as a pretty simple task, as opposed to “a goal to work toward.” You just pick them up and put them in the garbage. And while “hearing customer concerns” is commendable, it shouldn’t take three or four years for them to sink in.
The move comes as sales of Chinese made jerky treats diminish, amid increasing public concerns about them.
Five years ago, 90% of the pet industry’s jerky treats were made in China, said Lisa Stark, spokeswoman for Petco. Currently, about 50% of the jerky treats sold by Petco are from China.
Since 2007, the FDA says it has received about 4,800 reports of pet illnesses, and 1,000 dog deaths, possibly related to the consumption of jerky treats. The FDA, while issuing warnings, says it has yet to establish any direct link between the pet illnesses and the China-made treats.
Most of the complaints involved chicken jerky, but others included duck, sweet potato and chicken, according to the FDA.
Posted by John Woestendiek May 23rd, 2014 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, canyon creek, chicken jerky, china, china-made, chinese, complaints, deaths, dog, dog treats, dogs, duck, fda, health, illness, industry, jerky, jerky treats, kingdom pets, made in china, milos kitchen, national, nationwide, petco, pets, petsmart, pulling, removing, safety, sales, stores, sweet potato, treats, vitality, waggin train
The recall includes all dry pet food products with expiration dates prior to and including March 24, 2013. The brands include California Natural, EVO, Healthwise, Innova, and Karma.
Based in Fremont, Neb., Natura Pet is a maker of “natural” and “holistic” pet foods, according to a company statement.
The recall is an expansion of one that had been announced by the company last month, according to a Food and Drug Administration press release.
The affected products were sold through veterinary clinics and select pet specialty retailers throughout the United States and in Canada, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia and Costa Rica. The products were also sold online.
No canned wet foods or biscuits are included in the recall.
Pets infected with salmonella can appear tired, and have diarrhea and vomiting. Some pets may not show obvious symptoms, but experience decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Pets can spread the bacteria to other animals, including humans.
Natura Pet said people who have purchased the products should discard them. If their pets have consumed the recalled product and are showing symptoms, they should contact their veterinarian.
Posted by John Woestendiek April 25th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advisory, and Karma, animals, bacteria, brands, California Natural, cat, cat food, cats, dog, dog food, dogs, dry, EVO, fda, food and drug administration, health, Healthwise, Innova, natura, natura pet products, pets, recall, safety, salmonella, voluntary, warning
Jones Natural Chews Co of Rockford, Illinois, is recalling 2,705 boxes of pig ears after random tests found some of the product contaminated with Salmonella, the Food and Drug Administration reports.
The recall was the result of a routine sampling program by Washington State Department of Agriculture which revealed that the finished products contained the bacteria.
No illnesses have been reported.
The pig ears in question — also sold under the Blain’s Farm and Fleet and Country Butcher brands — were distributed in Connecticut, Iowa, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maine, Missouri, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, Washington and Wisconsin. They were shipped to distributors and retailers between September 15, 2010 and November 2, 2010
Consumers who have purchased any of these pig ears are urged to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-877-481-2663
Salmonella can affect animals and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products. People handling dry pet food and/or treats can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the chews or any surfaces exposed to these products.
Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. If your pet consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.
To see a full list of the recalled lots, keep reading. Read more »
Posted by John Woestendiek March 9th, 2011 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alert, animals, blains farm, brands, chews, dog food, ears, fda, fleet and country butcher, food, food and drug administration, health, illinois, jones, jones natural chews, jones natural chews co, list, lots, pets, pig ears, recall, recalled, rockford, safety, salmonella, treats, warning
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration detected the presence of salmonella organisms in one or more 8-ounce bags of Hartz Naturals Real Beef Treats during random testing.
The company, based in Secaucus, New Jersey, has not received any reports of animals or people becoming ill as a result of contact with the treats, and is investigating the source of the contamination.
The affected treats are stamped with the lot code BZ0969101E, according to the FDA.
Dog owners who have purchased the recalled treats should immediately throw them away, and the FDA advises dog owners whose pets are exhibiting fever, diarrhea, abdominal pain and nausea to seek veterinary assistance.
Consumers with questions regarding the recall should contact Hartz at 1-800-275-1414. You can read the company’s press release about the recall here.
Posted by John Woestendiek September 7th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: alert, animals, consumer, dog, dog treats, dogs, fda, hartz, hartz naturals, health, lot code, naturals, news, pets, press release, random, recall, recalled, safety, salmonella, symptoms, testing, treats, u.s. food and drug administration, voluntary, warning
No illnesses have been reported, and the voluntary recall is based on “an isolated instance,” in which a product sample with the above “Best By” had a positive result for Salmonella in a random test conducted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
The product, sold in 5-lb. and 28-lb. bags, was originally manufactured on December 17, 2009, Natural Balance, based in Pacoima, California, said in a press release. The company was formed by actor Dick Van Patten and partners, and is sold under his name.
Salmonella can affect animals and there is a risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products. People handling dry pet food can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with surfaces exposed to this product.
Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, the company advises you contact your veterinarian.
Recalled products were distributed in pet specialty stores in Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
Posted by John Woestendiek June 20th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: affected, animals, best by, chicken, dates, dog food, dogs, dry dog food, fda, food, health, natural balance, news, pet food, pets, recall, recalled, safety, salmonella, states, sweet potato, sweet potato & chicken, upc codes, voluntary
Giving your dog a bone — any bone — is a dangerous practice that can cause serious injury to your pet, the Food and Drug Administration says.
It’s not like they’re recalling bones, but the agency has issued a warning in an article appearing on the FDA’s online Consumer Updates page.
However popular the idea may be that it’s natural for dogs to chew on bones, the tradition – knick-knack paddy-whack aside — falls into the danger zone, in the FDA’s view.
“Some people think it’s safe to give dogs large bones, like those from a ham or a roast,” says Carmela Stamper, D.V.M., a veterinarian in the Center for Veterinary Medicine at the Food and Drug Administration. “Bones are unsafe no matter what their size. Giving your dog a bone may make your pet a candidate for a trip to your veterinarian’s office later, possible emergency surgery, or even death.”
The FDA lists 10 reasons why bones are a bad idea — and we’ll pass them on verbatim:
- Broken teeth. This may call for expensive veterinary dentistry.
- Mouth or tongue injuries. These can be very bloody and messy and may require a trip to see your veterinarian.
- Bone gets looped around your dog’s lower jaw. This can be frightening or painful for your dog and potentially costly to you, as it usually means a trip to see your veterinarian.
- Bone gets stuck in esophagus, the tube that food travels through to reach the stomach. Your dog may gag, trying to bring the bone back up, and will need to see your veterinarian.
- Bone gets stuck in windpipe. This may happen if your dog accidentally inhales a small enough piece of bone. This is an emergency because your dog will have trouble breathing. Get your pet to your veterinarian immediately!
- Bone gets stuck in stomach. It went down just fine, but the bone may be too big to pass out of the stomach and into the intestines. Depending on the bone’s size, your dog may need surgery or upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, a procedure in which your veterinarian uses a long tube with a built-in camera and grabbing tools to try to remove the stuck bone from the stomach.
- Bone gets stuck in intestines and causes a blockage. It may be time for surgery.
- Constipation due to bone fragments. Your dog may have a hard time passing the bone fragments because they’re very sharp and they scrape the inside of the large intestine or rectum as they move along. This causes severe pain and may require a visit to your veterinarian.
- Severe bleeding from the rectum. This is very messy and can be dangerous. It’s time for a trip to see your veterinarian.
- Peritonitis. This nasty, difficult-to-treat bacterial infection of the abdomen is caused when bone fragments poke holes in your dog’s stomach or intestines. Your dog needs an emergency visit to your veterinarian because peritonitis can kill your dog.
“Always supervise your dog with any chew product, especially one your dog hasn’t had before,” adds Stamper. “And always, if your dog ‘just isn’t acting right,’ call your veterinarian right away!”
We agree with those last two points, at least, but can’t help but wonder if a total bone ban may be a bit over-protective, a bit contrary to the nature and roots of dogs, and one more step in turning dogs into humans.
Most bones are bad — chicken bones, as we all know, in particular. But there are those that, with supervision, I don’t hesitate to give my particular dog, like marrow bones. They can help clean teeth, massage gums and, in my dog’s experience, seem quite safe.
What school are you in when it comes to bones? Do you think some are OK? Do you ban them in your household? Do you have a bone to pick with the FDA? We’d love to hear your thoughts.
Posted by John Woestendiek April 22nd, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bone, bones, caution, chew, dangerous, dog food, dogs, fda, food and drug administration, gag, hazard, health, injuries, news, obstruction, pets, safety, splinter, teeth, treats, warning
In light of concerns about Salmonella contamination, Response Products of Nebraska has issued a voluntary recall for its Advanced Cetyl M Joint Action Formula supplement for dogs.
The affected products include 120-count bottles and 360-count bottle with lot numbers 1210903 and 0128010.
The bottles were distributed through direct sales, retail stores, veterinarians and online retailers between January and April of this year.
Concerns center on a a hydrolyzed vegetable protein component provided by Basic Foods of Las Vegas, the FDA said in a press release.
Tests conducted by Basic Foods to detect Salmonella produced negative results; however, Response Products has determined to recall the two lots.
Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans.
People who handle dry pet food or treats can become infected with Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products.
The product comes in the form of light brown tablets, about the size of a dime.
Consumers who have purchased the listed lots of Cetyl M for Dogs are urged to contact Response Products (877-266-9757) or the place of purchase for further direction.
Posted by John Woestendiek April 14th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advanced cetyl, advanced cetyl m joint action formula, animals, basic foods, caution, cetyl m, dogs, fda, health, joint formula, lot numbers, news, ohmidog!, pets, products, recall, response products, salmonella, tablets, veterinarians, veterinary, voluntary, warning