Listen, I can deal with all kinds of product recalls that affect me, personally. Want me to ditch peaches? Fine. Tell me I have to avoid onions for a while? Doable. These kinds of things don’t really worry me all that much, but when you tell me that my dog’s food might be toxic? Well, let’s just say I might value his health more than my own, and I’ll do whatever it takes to keep him in good spirits. If you’re a dog owner, you probably feel the same way, which is why you should pay special attention to this newly expanded dog food recall bulletin published by the Food and Drug Administration.
It’s an update to an early recall of pet food produced by Sunshine Mills, inc., which originally issued a recall for some of its pet food products back in early September. The food, which is sold under a variety of brand names, may contain “elevated levels of aflatoxin, which is produced by mold and can cause serious symptoms if a dog or cat eats too much of it.
A statement from the company offers a summary of the recall and the symptoms you should look out for:
Sunshine Mills, Inc. has chosen to expand its voluntary recall to include these additional products as a precautionary measure in furtherance of its commitment to the safety and quality of its products. Pets with aflatoxin toxicity (aflatoxicosis) may show symptoms of illness including sluggishness or lethargy combined with a reluctance to eat, vomiting, yellowish tint to the eyes or gums, diarrhea, and in some cases, death. Pets experiencing any of these symptoms after consuming the recalled products should be seen by a veterinarian.
Vomiting and diarrhea are always clear signs that something isn’t right with your pet, and if those symptoms appear alongside lethargy and refusal to eat, it’s always a good idea to contact your veterinarian. That is especially true if you have been feeding your pet any of the following food brands: Champ®, Field Trial®, Good Dog, Hunter’s Special®, Old Glory®, Paws Happy Life®, Pet Expert, Principle, Retriever®, River Bend, Sportsman’s Pride®, Sprout®, Thrifty®, Top Runner® or Whiskers & Tails.
According to the recall, specific lots of those pet food brand products may contain high levels of the toxin, and they range from small 4 lb. bags to large 50 lb. bags. If you still have the products in your home, you can compare the lot codes with those on the recall bulletin to see if it is included in the recall.
Remember, this is a recall that has already been expanded once, so it might be reasonable to switch to another brand of food even if you’ve been feeding your pet one of the products listed above and he or she has not gotten sick. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.