The United States Food And Drug Administration has issued a warning to not feed your dogs Performance Dog Raw Pet Food produced on or after July 22nd, 2019. Two samples collected during an inspection of Bravo Packing, Inc., the manufacturer of Performance Dog Raw Pet Food, tested positive for Salmonella and/or Listeria monocytogenes. Here’s what you need to know about this.
Which Products Are Affected?
The specific product the FDA is cautioning about is Performance Dog Raw Pet Food, lot code 072219, sold frozen in two-pound pouches. However, they are recommending you throw out any Performance Dog product purchased on or after July 22nd, 2019. These food products don’t have lot codes printed on retail packaging, so it’s best to be safe.
According to the FDA, this is the second time that Bravo Packing, Inc. product has tested positive for pathogen contamination. In September 2018, the same manufacturer recalled all Performance Dog Raw Pet Food due to Salmonella contamination. In 2016, an FDA inspection found Performance Dog food that tested positive for the drugs pentobarbital and phenytoin.
What Are The FDA’s Concerns?
These products are sold frozen, so the FDA is concerned people still have them stored in their freezers. Freezing or refrigeration does not kill these bacteria.
Obviously there is a concern for your dog’s health, but salmonella can also be passed on from canine to human, so this is a larger public health issue as well. Dogs can get sick from the pathogens, and they may also be carriers of the bacteria without appearing to be ill. Any person who comes into contact with surfaces contaminated by the food is at risk.
The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requires that all animal food, just like human food, be safe to eat, produced under sanitary conditions, contain no harmful substances, and be truthfully labeled. Dog food is more likely than human food to contain these bacteria since it’s not cooked which often kills harmful pathogens.
How To Spot Salmonella Contamination
Salmonella is a bacterium that can cause illness and death in humans and animals, especially those who are very young, very old, or have weak immune systems. According to the CDC, symptoms of Salmonella in humans include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps. Most people will get better without treatment, but in some cases the infection can spread from the intestines to the blood stream and further unless the person is promptly treated with antibiotics.
Dogs don’t always display symptoms of Salmonella, but signs can include vomiting, diarrhea, fever, loss of appetite and/or decreased activity level. If your dog displays these symptoms, contact your veterinarian right away. Again, it’s important to note that infected dogs can shed the bacteria in their feces and saliva without showing signs of being sick.
How To Spot Listeria Contamination
Listeria monocytogenes is a bacterium that can cause illness and death in people and animals. The CDC says that listeriosis in humans can cause a variety of symptoms, including headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, convulsions and usually fever and muscle aches.
It’s especially serious for pregnant women, as infections during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery, or life-threatening infection of the baby.
While uncommon in animals, Listeria infections are still possible. Symptoms in dogs may include mild to severe diarrhea; anorexia; fever; nervous, muscular and respiratory signs; abortion; depression; shock; and death. And remember: dogs do not need to display any symptoms in order to pass “L. mono” on to people.
What Should You Do If You Have The Affected Food?
If you do have the affected product at home, the first thing to do is stop feeding it to your dogs right away. Dispose of the food in a secure container that cannot be accessed by other animals, including wildlife.
You should also clean the refrigerators or freezers where the food was stored. Disinfect all bowls, utensils, food prep surfaces, bedding, toys, floors, and any other surfaces that the food or your dog may have come into contact with. This includes any place where your dog goes to the bathroom, as the bacteria can remain in feces. If not cleaned up, people or other animals can be exposed.
Lastly: make sure you thoroughly wash your hands after handling the affected food or cleaning up contaminated spaces.
The FDA encourages that if you have complaints about dog food products you report them electronically through the Safety Reporting Portal. This information will help the FDA further protect human and animal health.
H/T: Dog Food Advisor