Pet food recall expanded after more than 70 dogs die

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Pet owners and veterinarians are being warned about recalled Sportmix pet food products now linked to the deaths of more than 70 dogs and the illnesses of 80 others. 

Midwestern Pet Food is expanding its recall of dog and cat food sold online by retailers nationwide as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration investigates potentially fatal levels of aflatoxins. 

Midwestern, based in Evansville, Indiana, is broadening a prior recall to include all pet foods manufactured in the company’s Oklahoma plant containing corn and having an expiration date on or before July 9, 2022. 

The recalled products include “05” in the date/lot code, which identifies them as having been made in the Oklahoma plant. More than 1,000 lot codes are affected. 

The company in December recalled only certain lots of its Sportmix product after the deaths of at least 28 canines and the illnesses of eight others. The Missouri Department of Agriculture tested multiple product samples and found high levels of aflatoxins, which are toxins produced by mold that can cause death and illness in pets, according to the FDA. 

The toxins can be present even if there is no visible mold, the agency cautioned.

Pets with aflatoxin poisoning may have symptoms such as sluggishness, loss of appetite, vomiting, jaundice (yellowish tint to the eyes or gums due to liver damage) and diarrhea. Pets can also suffer liver damage without showing symptoms.

Inside the market to feed dogs like humans 07:13

“FDA is issuing this advisory to notify the public about the potentially fatal levels of aflatoxins in Midwestern pet food products that may still be on store shelves, online or in pet owners’ homes,” the agency stated in an alert posted Monday.

“We continue a thorough review of our facilities and practices in full cooperation with FDA,” the nearly 100-year-old company said Tuesday in a statement. “Until recently, throughout our long history, we’ve never had a product recall.”

Customers with questions can reach a call center staffed with licensed veterinarians at (800) 474-4163, ext. 455, or email [email protected], Midwestern said.

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