By Dr. Becker
To quote Philly.com:
"NOTHING is certain in life except death and taxes and, increasingly, pet food and treat recalls."
2013 Dog and Cat Food Recalls
According to the FDA website, there were 33 separate recalls of pet food and livestock feed in 2013. On average, that's one every 11 days.
Of the 33 recalls, 21 were for dog and cat food. Here is a brief summary of the recalls by month as captured at AVMA.org. See if you notice anything interesting about what types of products are being recalled…
- All recalls during the month of January were for antibiotic residues in jerky pet treats. Manufacturers included Cadet (IMS Trading Corp), Milo's Kitchen, Purina, Publix supermarkets, and Hartz Mountain Corp.
- Nature's Variety recalled one batch of Instinct® Raw Organic Chicken Formula because pieces of clear plastic may have been in some bags and could cause a potential choking risk to pets.
- Nature's Deli recalled two lots of chicken jerky products for possible salmonella contamination.
- Kassel Associated Industries recalled 46 lots of a variety of products for possible salmonella contamination.
- Nutri-Vet recalled 16 lots of chicken treats for possible salmonella contamination.
- Honest Kitchen recalled 5 lots of product for possible salmonella contamination.
- Hy-Vee recalled 3 lots of product for aflatoxin contamination.
- Diggin' Your Dog recalled 1 lot of chicken pet treats for possible salmonella contamination.
- Steve's Real Food recalled 1 lot of product for possible salmonella contamination.
- Diamond Pet Foods recalled 7 lots of various cat food products for low levels of thiamine.
- Bravo! recalled 1 lot of product for possible salmonella contamination.
- Natura Pet Products recalled over 100 lots of California Natural, EVO, Healthwise, and Innova products for possible salmonella contamination.
- Jones Natural Chews recalled 9 lots of products for possible salmonella contamination.
- Iams recalled 10 lots of products for possible mold growth.
- Natura Pet Products issued another recall of several hundred lots of California Natural, EVO, Healthwise, Innova and Karma products for possible salmonella contamination.
- BARF World, Inc. recalled 2 products produced on a single day for possible salmonella contamination.
- Bravo! recalled 3 products for possible salmonella contamination.
- Breeders' Choice recalled 1 lot of product for possible salmonella contamination.
- Natural Pet Products issued a third recall, this time for all dry cat food and treats by Karma, Innova, Healthwise, EVO, and California Natural.
- Natura Pet Products issued a fourth recall for possible salmonella contamination, for all Mother Nature biscuits/bars/treats, all Karma dry dog food, all Healthwise dry cat food and dry dog food, all California Natural, EVO and Innova dry cat and dog foods and biscuits/bars/treats.
- Robert Abady recalled 2 products for possible salmonella contamination.
- Dogswell recalled all Catswell and Dogswell jerky treats for antibiotic residues.
- Iams and Eukanuba recalled dozens of lots of dry dog and cat food for possible salmonella contamination.
- Purina pulled 1 lot of dry dog food for possible salmonella contamination.
- Kritter's Kitchen Kreations recalled jerky pet treats for possible salmonella contamination.
- Bailey's Choice Dog Treats recalled several jerky products for possible salmonella contamination.
Not only were pet jerky treats pulled from store shelves for the presence of illegal antibiotic residues, but several brands were also recalled for potential salmonella contamination. It seems like a "no brainer" that EVERY pet owner should avoid these products for the foreseeable future.
Of the thousands of commercial pet food products recalled during 2013, by my count, only about a dozen involved raw or dehydrated raw diets. This is why I find the dire warnings from the FDA and other organizations about the "dangers" of raw pet food so shamefully misleading. Statistically speaking, they are still the safest foods you could feed your pet, compared to dry food.
If You Feed Processed Pet Food to Your Dog or Cat…
For those of you who feed commercial processed pet food to your dog or cat, keep in mind that the dangers of salmonella poisoning are a much greater threat to the human members of your family than the four-legged ones. The AVMA offers the following tips for safe handling of processed pet foods and treats:
- Wash your hands thoroughly after handling any pet food or treats
- Don't allow very young children, elderly people or those who are immunocompromised to handle pet food or treats
- Keep all pet foods and treats away from your family's food.
- Do not prepare pet foods in the same area or with the same equipment/utensils you use to prepare human foods.
- Do not allow pets on countertops or other areas where human food is prepared.
- Feeding pets in the kitchen has been identified as a source of infection. If you can arrange to feed your pet in an area other than your kitchen, consider doing so. Alternatively, feed your pet as far away from human food preparation areas as possible.