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President Obama’s weekly address hit upon one of the more troubling aspects of our government right now: the total failure of the FDA to keep us, our children, and our pets safe in the knowledge that what is consumed will not harm any of us.  He has named a new Commissioner of the Food and Drug Agency, Dr. Margaret Hamburg (go ahead, giggle as I did at her last name being Hamburg(er)–I blame the cold meds I’m taking), and Dr. Joshua Sharfstein (nope, no food-related funny with his last name) as Principal Deputy Commissioner.  Obama is also creating a new Food Safety Working Group which ultimately sounds like it will be making sure that the left hand of government agencies involved with food safety know what the right hand is doing–what a concept!

And as an animal welfare advocate I am THRILLED with the short, but oh-so-important sentence President Obama stated, “As part of our commitment to public health, our Agriculture Department is closing a loophole in the system to ensure that diseased cows don’t find their way into the food supply.”  Please read Wayne Pacelle’s email sent out this afternoon in response to this fantastic decision.  Thank you President Obama, and thank you to everyone who helped put an end to the horribly abusive downer cattle issue!

Great news from President Obama on farm animals

March 14, 2009


Our investigation thrust a global spotlight on abuse of downed cows.

Dear ******,

It’s been a long fight, and today, we closed another chapter on it. Since the mid-1990s, The HSUS has been working hard to stop as a matter of public policy the abuse of downer cattle — animals too sick or injured to walk. And today, President Obama himself announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture was officially putting a stop to non-ambulatory cattle being mishandled in order to get them into slaughter plants. He made the announcement along with two top selections for the Food and Drug Administration and a series of other statements about food safety.

I invite you to read my blog post for today about the food safety crises and horrifying investigations that led up to today’s announcement.

The length of time we had to persist and what our investigations revealed are sad, but today I celebrate this news. And I hope that it is a harbinger of a far more serious attitude toward food safety and animal welfare from the new Administration. I am personally looking forward to working with Secretary Vilsack — a man of great integrity — on a wide range of issues. And I express my gratitude to him and his team today for his decisive action.

Many of you joined us in demanding change on this issue, so this is your victory as well as the animals’. Thank you for all you do.

Sincerely,

Wayne Pacelle
President & CEO
The Humane Society of the United States

P.S. Did you know you can easily subscribe to receive my blog daily by email or RSS? Look for the links to subscribe on the right side of my blog, www.waynepacelle.org. I write daily about pressing issues like farm animal abuse, so it’s a great way to stay in touch.

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Received this from the FDA on 9/19/07 regarding raw diet pet manufacturer Bravo! recalling three of its pet food products:

Recall — Firm Press Release
FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company. This listserv covers mainly Class I (life-threatening) recalls. A complete listing of recalls can be found in the FDA Enforcement Report at: http://www.fda.gov/opacom/Enforce.html

Bravo! Issues Nationwide Recall of Select Poultry Products for Dogs and Cats

Contact:
David Bogner
(866) 922-9222

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE –Vernon, CT — Sept. 18, 2007— Bravo! announces a voluntary recall of select tubes of three of its poultry products for cats and dogs. The pet food is being recalled because two of the products have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella and Listeria monocytogenes, while the other product has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

Both Salmonella and Listeria are organisms which can cause serious infections in dogs and cats, and if there is cross contamination, in people, especially small children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy people with Salmonella infection may only suffer short-term symptoms, such as high fever, severe headache, vomiting, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. Long term complications can include arthritis and other more serious ailments. Healthy people with Listeria infection may only suffer short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women.

The company has received no reports of illness in either people or animals associated with any of the three products.

The recalled products are distributed nationwide to distributors, retail stores, internet sales and directly to consumers, and they can be identified by the batch ID code located on the hang tag attached to the bottom of the plastic film tubes. The recalled products should not be sold or fed to pets. Pet owners should return unopened frozen tubes of food to the store where purchased for a full refund. Pet owners should dispose of opened tubes of product in a safe manner (example, a securely covered trash receptacle) and return the washed plastic batch ID tag to the store where purchased for a full refund.

Recalled Pet Food

Product: Bravo Original Formula Chicken Blend frozen raw food
Product Numbers: 21-102, 21-105, 21-110
Sizes: 2 pound, 5 pound and 10 pound tubes
Batch ID code (on hang tag): 236
Reason for Recall: Salmonella, Listeria

Product: Bravo Original Formula Turkey Blend frozen raw food
Product Numbers: 31-102, 31-105, 31-110
Sizes: 2 pound, 5 pound and 10 pound tubes
Batch ID code (on hang tag): 236
Reason for Recall: Listeria

Product: Bravo Basic Formula Finely Ground Chicken frozen raw food
Product Number: 21-212
Size: 2 pound tube
Batch ID Code (on hang tag): 226
Reason for Recall: Salmonella, Listeria

Other Batch IDs for these same products are not involved in the recall.

Bravo! is issuing this action out of an abundance of caution and sincerely regrets any inconvenience to pet owners as a result of this announcement. This voluntary recall has been issued because the FDA detected the bacteria in samples during a recent review.

In an effort to prevent the transmission of Salmonella from pets to family members and care givers, the FDA recommends that everyone follow appropriate pet food handling guidelines when feeding their pets. A list of safe pet food handling tips can be found at:
http://www.fda.gov/cvm/CVM_Updates/foodbornetips.htm.

People may risk Salmonella infection not only by handling these pet foods, but also by contact with pets or other surfaces exposed to these foods, so it is important that they thoroughly wash their hands with hot water and soap. Anyone who is experiencing the symptoms of Salmonella or Listeria infection after having handled the recalled product should seek medical attention. Consumers may report any complaints to FDA’s local District Complaint Coordinator’s located on the FDA website: http://www.fda.gov/opacom/backgrounders/complain.html.

Healthy cats and dogs rarely become sick from Salmonella. Animals ill with Salmonella will display symptoms similar to the ones listed above for humans. People who have concerns about whether their pet has Salmonella or not should contact their veterinarian.

For more information on the Bravo recall, please visit www.bravorawdiet.com, or call toll free (866) 922-9222

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FDA’s Recalls, Market Withdrawals and Safety Alerts Page: http://www.fda.gov/opacom/7alerts.html

Just got an email from the FDA (their website link is in my blog roll) and wanted to pass the news along ASAP. After the breaking news yesterday of Wal-Mart pulling chicken jerky dog treats produced in China, we are now getting this salmonella warning for Red Flannel dog food produced by Mars Petcare, Inc., and it’s feeling all to eerily similar to the beginning of the pet food chaos we all experienced mid-March and continuing on over these past months. Sigh.

***UPDATE 8/22/07 4:30pm*** Mars Petcare, Inc. has issued ANOTHER salmonella-related recall notice regarding a different pet food they produce, Krasdale gravy dry food. Click HERE to read the Krasdale press release.***

***UPDATE 9/13/08*** NEW salmonella-related recall from Mars Petcare USA: Deja vu: Mars Petcare US announces 9-12-08 pet food recall of SEVERAL brands due to potential salmonella contamination (list included)

marc-broussard-hob-8-20-07.jpegFirst off, Marc Broussard is one act you do NOT want to miss if he’s in your area. Second, WTF San Diego concert-goers?!?! Let me just get my rant out of the way before I rave.

While I love San Diego county like crazy and have spent the better part of my life there, I find myself becoming more and more disenchanted with the downright rude behavior I seem to run across at local concerts. Can someone PLEASE explain to me why anyone would pay for a ticket to a show, then stand around and talk–LOUDLY?! In my opinion it’s beyond disrespectful to practically drown out the performance of someone on stage who is giving it their heart and soul, but it’s also stupid to spend your money on something you obviously aren’t there to enjoy. If you’re there just to pick up on someone, save your money and just hit up a bar or go online–sheesh! There ARE those of us who must obviously be somewhat demented because we assume that folks who come to a show actually want to enjoy the show. Mind you, there was a healthy dose of attentive fans in attendance last night (despite the surprisingly small crowd), but it was embarrassing to hear so much talking when Toby Lightman and/or Marc were singing something without heavy band back-up and you could hear all the morons blabbing away. Sigh. (And yes, I eventually did tell a few to shut the **** up. 😉)

That being said, oh my gosh what FUN last night’s House of Blues-San Diego show was (rude idiots aside), and what energy and enthusiasm Marc brought to each song. For those of you not aware of Marc Broussard, you are totally missing out on what many are calling this generation’s “King of Blue-Eyed Soul”, and they are so on the mark with that one. The first time I heard of Marc was a couple of years back when his chart-climbing “Home” off his first major labelmarc-broussard-carencro.jpg album, Carencro (an homage to his hometown of Carencro, Louisiana), caught my attention upon first hearing it on the radio, in much the same way Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car”, or The Cliks’ “Oh Yeah” song and video made me stand up and take notice. I love it when a musician and his/her music is something so different from the rest that your ears alert your brain to something magical. Have to admit that when I tracked down more info on “Home” I was shocked to discover this Bayou Soul voice and energy came from such a young man, let alone a white one at that! That point is played upon in the first 35 seconds of the “Home” video where you are led to believe the soulful humming is coming from the African-American man on the bus, then POOF, the young white boy sitting behind him pulls out his guitar and starts wailing away. Love it!

Marc Broussard: “Home” from Carencro

Marc’s latest CD, S.O.S.: Save Our Soul, is full of classic soul tune covers except for one marc-broussard-save-our-soul.jpggreat original song, “Come In from the Cold”, penned by Marc. Several reviewers have wondered what the point was to doing a CD of covers but I say why not? Marc’s voice is perfect for these songs and it has reawakened in me the appreciation of old-school soul music. And heck, they’re fun! Plus it’s a bit of a “filler” while he’s working on his next CD.

Marc Broussard: “Love and Happiness” from S.O.S.: Save Our Soul

This current tour is called the “Soul Revue” tour and with the soul that Marc, the band, toby-lightman.jpgand featured guest Toby Lightman (subbing for Shannon McNally) put forth, the show most definitely lived up to its moniker. Unfortunately we missed the first twenty minutes or so, so only caught the last two Toby songs. We were very disappointed to walk in and discover that Toby was taking Shannon’s place because we’d seen Toby open for Carbon Leaf a few months back and she was incredible. I’m sure Shannon is great too, but missing out on songs from Toby was a bummer. What was great, though, is that she came out and joined Marc and the band for several songs throughout the night.

Marc Broussard and Toby Lightman at Stubbs

“If I Could Build My Whole World Around You”

What was also surprising and great, was that for the encore it was just Marc, sans band. He was giving it his all and having a fabulous time with the crowd, as we all were with him. (Especially when we all helped him remember the words to his memorable performance of “Lonely Night in marc-broussard-solo-sd-hob-8-20-07.jpegGeorgia”.) Who he wasn’t so thrilled with (and boy did he let his feelings be known, capped off with a flipping of the fingers under the chin directed at HOB ;)) was the fact that HOB apparently is pretty strict with getting their performers off-stage at a particular hour–enjoyment of performer and crowd be damned. Marc was in a bit of a “f**k you, I’m playing for my fans as long as I want” mood (pretty much the words he used. ;)) and continued his encore for about thirty fantastic minutes more. He did apologize at the end to the employees of HOB for making them have to work late. 😉

All in all, and despite the rude talkers in the crowd, it was a VERY enjoyable night (even more so than when I saw him there a couple years back and got to do a meet and greet with him–THAT was a great experience!) and one I would highly recommend you take in for yourself as soon as Marc and his “Soul Revue” hit your town. Now if they’d only all worn some classic soul garb like crushed velvet jackets and some shiny pants . . .

Here’s another pet food recall I just got in an email, but amazingly this one is NOT related to the melamine-tainted fiasco we’ve faced over the past 8 weeks. Seems to be a lot of salmonella warnings/recalls lately in not only the pet food/treat industry, but also the human food industry. Guess if it’s not one thing it’s another.

Recall — Firm Press Release

FDA posts press releases and other notices of recalls and market withdrawals from the firms involved as a service to consumers, the media, and other interested parties. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company. This listserv covers mainly Class I (life-threatening) recalls. A complete listing of recalls can be found in the FDA Enforcement Report at: http://www.fda.gov/opacom/Enforce.html

Single Lot of 55lb Bags of Ol’Roy Complete Nutrition Dry Dog Food Voluntarily Recalled in Select Stores by Doane Pet Care

Contact:
Doane Pet Care
908-813-8053

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — Manassas, Virginia — June 6, 2007 — Doane Pet Care is announcing today a voluntary recall on a specific single lot of 55 pound bonus bags of Ol’ Roy Complete Nutrition dry dog food. This product was produced at one facility in Manassas, VA and was distributed exclusively by some Wal-Mart Stores. Please note that no other Ol’ Roy products are affected, and that this recall is not related to the Menu Foods recall (and other recent recalls) of pet food due to tainted Chinese vegetable proteins.

This product has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. People handling this pet food can become exposed to Salmonella, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with this pet food or any surfaces exposed to this product. Consumers who have the dry dog food bearing the code “04 0735 1” with a “Best By Apr 13 08” should not feed it to their pets.

This voluntary recall has been issued because FDA detected Salmonella in the product. Doane Pet Care has not confirmed the presence of Salmonella, despite extensive independent testing of duplicate samples. Nonetheless, the company is issuing this voluntary recall out of an abundance of caution. The company regrets any inconvenience to pet owners. No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this product, or any product produced at this facility.

Product: Ol’ Roy Complete Nutrition dry dog food
Size: 55 pound bonus bag
UPC Code: 6 05388 72076 4
Lot Number: 04 0735 1
Best Buy Date: Apr 13 ’08
Best Buy Date Location: Back of bag

Affected Stores: Only 69 Wal-Mart Stores potentially received this product from 2 distribution warehouses in Virginia. The 69 stores are located in Maryland (4 stores), North Carolina (10), Ohio (1), Pennsylvania (3), Virginia (40) and West Virginia (11). A full listing of the affected stores is available at http://www.doanepetcare.com. This product UPC has been blocked from retail sale at these 69 locations.

Any remaining product should not be fed to pets. Dispose of product in a safe manner (example, a securely covered trash receptacle) and return the empty bag to the store where purchased for a full refund.

Pet owners who have questions about the voluntary recall of this 55 lb bonus bag of Ol’ Roy Complete Nutrition dry dog food products should call 800-624-7387, or visit the web site listed above.

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Phew! Just finished spending a good deal of time revamping and updating the Pet Products Recall page (changed the name from Pet Food Recall info/posts page since I decided to include ALL pet-related recalls, such as the salmonella-related recalls, not just the ones related to the pet food chaos), so give it a gander and let me know if there’s anything I need to change and/or add. Thanks! Too pooped out now to do a regular post, but did want to at least post some interesting news articles and links I have run across today.

Melamine and hogs/Intentional poisoning of products?:

US Wheat Industry assurances:

Homemade diets for pets? Pro and Con:

FDA:

While revamping and updating information on the Pet Product Recalls page, I found this 4/16/07 Consumer Health Information update titled “FDA’s Ongoing Pet Food Investigation”, which I hadn’t seen before. Also wanted to post the FDA’s search engine for recalled foods , but I would HIGHLY recommend continuing to check the web sites of individual companies or here. At least the FDA site is another tool for those interested in finding out the most information possible. I think we have all discovered that you cannot depend on just one media source, blog, or government agency to give you all the information you need, since it is always changing. While there are some fantastic sites and resources available, there just isn’t really one media outlet alone that has been able to keep up on EVERY bit of info that surfaces. That being said, I will still stick to my claim that the blogging community has been the primary source for the most updated information getting out to concerned lovers of pets in quick and effective fashion.

Probably won’t post tomorrow (unless some news breaks), so have a GREAT weekend, everyone! 🙂

Sometimes you just do NOT want to be right about something, and many of us did NOT want to be right about the list of recalled items expanding over time, nor did we want to be right about the tainted wheat gluten making it into human food processing plants. Yet here we are with yet ANOTHER recall notice from the FDA today, added to the alarming report this week from the Boston Globe.

The recall today affects another branded and private-label pet food manufacturer, Sunshine Mills Inc., and includes: Nurture Chicken & Rice, Nurture Lamb & Rice, Pet Life Large, Pet Life Extra Large, Pet Life Large Variety, Pet Life Large Peanut Butter, Lassie Lamb and Rice (AKA Natural Way Dog Biscuits baked with Lamb & Rice), Pet Life People Pleasers Dog Treats, Companion’s Best Multi Flavor Biscuit, Stater Brothers Large Biscuit, Ol’Roy Peanut Butter Biscuit, Ol’Roy 4 Flavor Large Biscuit, Ol’Roy Puppy Biscuit, Champion Breed Peanut Butter Biscuit, Champion Breed Large Biscuit, Perfect Pals Large Biscuit, Stater Brothers Large Biscuit. I will add the code information with other recalled pet food information on the Pet food recall info/posts page.

I noticed the FDA has revamped their Pet Food Recall page, which is a sad sign to me that this situation is going to be with us for some time. I also found this Recalls, Market Withdrawals and Safety Alerts page, which I hadn’t seen before. Oh, and can I just vent for a moment and ask all the affected companies and the FDA to STOP SAYING that other products are safe and we do not need to worry! Kind of hard for us to buy into that idea since practically every other day we’re getting news of more items being recalled. Just tell us, once and for all, the names of all companies which received the tainted wheat gluten so WE, the consumers, can make our own decisions about what is and isn’t safe. Simple request, in my opinion.

***Just got another recall notice (American Bullie A.B. Bull Pizzle Puppy Chew and Dog Chew [made from all American beef pizzle]) from the FDA in my mail, but this is another SALMONELLA-related one (not Menu Foods-related), similar to this one from 3/25.***

ARGH! If Menu Foods is confusing the mass media outlets, I guess it’s okay if I’m beginning to get confused about their press releases, too? Why don’t they just dispense with any further confusion on ANYONE’S part by just doing what they should until the mystery of how aminopterin (rat poison) got into their foods is solved: just CLOSE THE TWO PLANTS where the tainted food was manufactured and have ANY pet food manufactured there during that time (whether on the recall list or not) be pulled until some sort of answer is found? Oh wait, silly me, $$$. Doh!

I’m including today’s Menu Foods full press release, along with the opening statement from their press conference last Friday.

Here’s today’s press release, supposedly clarifying their press release from two days ago:

March 26, 2007

Clarification From Menu Foods: No Expanded Recall

TORONTO, ONTARIO–(CCNMatthews – March 26, 2007) –

NOT FOR RELEASE OVER US NEWSWIRE SERVICES

Media outlets have reported conflicting and incorrect information, including that Menu Foods has expanded its recall to include all products produced.

To clarify, late last week, the US Food and Drug Administration (the “FDA”) and various media outlets reported that some retailers still had recalled product on their shelves. In response, Menu Foods issued instructions for retailers to remove from their shelves all cuts and gravy products of the flavours listed on the recall list, regardless of the dates produced. For many retailers, this had already been completed as their standard operating procedure.

This step did not expand the recall but provided the remaining retailers with an efficient means of withdrawing the recalled product. The full recall list is available at www.menufoods.com.

In addition, Menu Foods reiterated that there is no evidence of any problems in any products manufactured at either its Streetsville, Ontario, facility or its North Sioux City, South Dakota, facility. Furthermore, there is no evidence of problems in any of the products not on the recall list produced at Emporia, Kansas, or Pennsauken, New Jersey.

Menu Foods has also posted the opening statement made at their press conference from last Friday:

Opening statement
By Paul K. Henderson
President and CEO, Menu Foods Income Fund
23 March, 2007

Ladies and gentlemen:
Thank you for assembling on such short notice. I have some brief opening comments. And then we will take questions. The news conference will conclude at 4:30 sharp.
My name is Paul Henderson, and I am the President and CEO of Menu Foods. With me today is Dr. Richard Shields, Executive Vice President of Menu Foods. Rick is head of Menu’s technical services that includes research & development, regulatory and quality assurance. Rick is a PHD in Animal Nutrition.
We are happy and relieved that the experts from the New York State Department of Agriculture and Cornell University have discovered the root of the issue that has harmed North American cats and dogs. This important discovery caps an unprecedented search by top experts. Dedicated and knowledgeable researchers at universities, independent laboratories, and our own veterinary consultants worked tirelessly to defend and protect our cats and dogs. Over the past seven days, we have spoken with almost two hundred thousand consumers. They were scared; some like myself, are angry; they demonstrated a level of care and concern that only those of us who are pet-owners can understand. Our hearts go out to the many thousands of pet-owners across Canada and the U.S. for their losses and their worry. We are grateful to them for their patience as we hunted for the root of the problem.
I can anticipate some of your questions, so let me address them briefly.

Q. How did this substance get into our products?
A. At this stage, we do not know. Our immediate next steps will be to begin testing of all suspect raw materials with the goal of quickly identifying the means through which this substance entered our supply chain.

Q. Which specific products made by our company contain this substance?
A. Again, we do not know with certainty. This morning, the researchers advised us of their discovery as they investigated the recalled product. At this time we have no reason to suspect that this matter goes beyond the recalled product.

Q. What should pet-owners do?
A. Until we have these answers, we have the following advice for consumers:
* We want to reinforce our view that all consumers should immediately stop using the recalled product.
* If your pet is showing any signs of illness after consuming any recalled pet food, see a veterinarian immediately

Q. What about the future of Menu Foods?
A. We have a strong, sustainable business, and we’re confident about the future. Our customers and partners have been understanding, supportive and loyal. And for that, we are grateful.

As I have explained, we have a lot of work to do. And we are eager to get back to it. But we will take questions for about 20 minutes.

I also ran across an interesting article at globeandmail.com, which does a good job chronicling the rise and fall history of Menu Foods before this latest catastrophe.

Just a reminder, too, about Petrapport, Inc.’s recall of Berkley & Jensen pig ear dog treats due to salmonella.

And here’s my initial Menu Foods recall post with links, or you can click the Pet food recall info/posts page at the top of this blog.

[4/5/07: ***Just got another recall notice (American Bullie A.B. Bull Pizzle Puppy Chew and Dog Chew [made from all American beef pizzle]) from the FDA in my mail, but this is another SALMONELLA-related one. (Not Menu Foods-related)***]

In the wake of the Menu Foods pet food recall I realized it’s really up to each of us to stay on top of things since we cannot assume that big business or our government will always (or ever) looking out for our best interest. With that in mind I signed up for the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) recall listserv (yes, I know…it’s government, but... 😉) and thought I’d pass along the latest recall information they’ve posted. Unfortunately it is (yet again!) another pet-related item, but it is also harmful to humans who come into contact with it, having the possibility to inflict serious health issues for both humans AND pets–please read!

Petrapport Issues Recall of Pig Ear Dog Treats Because of Salmonella Contamination

Contact:
Luciana DeLeon
201-854-6157

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — North Bergen, NJ — March 23, 2007 — Petrapport, Inc. is voluntarily recalling pig ear dog treats it imported from a Chilean company during the period August 2006 through December 2006 because the pig ears have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella, an organism that can cause serious infections in dogs, and, if there is cross contamination, young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems.

Laboratory testing has confirmed that samples of Full-Cut Pig Ears dog treats sold by BJ’s Wholesale Club in 25-count packages under the “Berkley & Jensen” brand with no lot number and only the expiration advisory “BEST IF USED BY 2009” (without referencing a specific month) were contaminated with Salmonella. Additional testing of other pig ear dog treats from shipments during the above time period has not revealed any additional evidence of Salmonella contamination, but Petrapport nonetheless is voluntarily recalling them out of an abundance of caution due to concern that the pig ears imported during this period may not have been effectively irradiated for Salmonella before shipment from Chile.

The voluntary recall includes dog treats sold by BJ’s Wholesale Club in its 25-count packages of “Berkley & Jensen” Full-Cut Pig Ears dog treats with no lot number and only the expiration advisories “BEST IF USED BY 2009” (without referencing a specific month) as well as “BEST IF USED BY SEPTEMBER 2009,” “BEST IF USED BY OCTOBER 2009,” “BEST IF USED BY NOVEMBER 2009,” and “BEST IF USED BY DECEMBER 2009.”

Also included within this voluntary recall are the following lots of pig ear dog treats sold in bulk by other retailers under the “Petrapport” brand:

ITEM #

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

RECALLED LOT #S

8915

Bulk Low Fat Pig Ears

101808 & 102108

8772P

Two Pack Bulk Pig Ears

101707

8770P

12 Pack Bulk Pig Ears

101707

8774P

24 Pack Bulk Pig Ears

101907

7416

1 lb. Bulk Pig Ear Strips

101907

7425

24 oz. Bulk Pig Ear Strips

5039

Salmonella can potentially be transferred to people handling these dog treats, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the product or any surfaces exposed to these products. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Dogs that become ill from Salmonella generally will have a fever and diarrhea that may contain blood or mucus. Affected animals may seem more tired that usual, and may have vomiting. Some dogs do not have diarrhea, but will have decreased appetite, fever and excess salivation. If your dog has consumed the recalled product and is exhibiting these signs, please contact your veterinarian.

While there have been no confirmed illnesses to date, consumers should immediately stop feeding these treats to their dogs. These products have been removed from the sales floors and the sales inventories of all retailers.

Consumers who purchased any of the above-identified pig ear dog treats should discontinue use of the products and may return the unused portion to the place of purchase for a full refund.

Consumers who have further questions may contact Petrapport at 800-447-3872 extension 110.

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POSTS for 3/17-8/22:

  • 3/18/07: Science Diet has added some of their foods to the voluntary recall list. Pets HAVE died and others are suffering severe health problems, so PLEASE check this new list AND the ones I listed above. Thank you! Science Diet Recall (On 3/30/07 Science Diet recalled feline m/d)
  • 3/18/07 10:15PM PST: The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is even posting information which shows just how far-reaching this has become. They even have a web page with information on how to register adverse reactions/consumer complaints. I appreciate that so many of you are reading as much as you can about this and staying on top of the situation. What wonderful owners your pets have! 🙂 And PLEASE continue to spread the information to AS MANY folks as you can, and have THEM stay on top of it as well. I’ll definitely continue to add information as I find out about it.
  • 3/19/07 11:10 AM PST: Looks like Menu Foods has another press release, which interestingly enough says it’s not for US newswire services, whatever THAT really means. It’s in PDF format and can be accessed from their main recall page.
  • 3/20/07 11:20 AM PST: It is disconcerting to hear that in February, Menu Foods apparently was notified of the problems with pets eating certain Menu Foods produced food, did their own testing in which approximately 17% of the tested pets died, yet it wasn’t until March 16th that the recall was announced?!?! I am obviously no expert on how these things work, but it sure seems to me that the motto of “better safe than sorry” should have been in place LONG BEFORE March 16th! Menu Foods recall notice states:

“We take these complaints very seriously and, while we are still looking for a specific cause, we are acting to err on the side of caution” said Paul K. Henderson, President and CEO, Menu Foods. “We will do whatever is necessary to ensure that our products maintain the very highest quality standards.”

Seems to me that “acting to err on the side of caution” would have meant alerting consumers about the problems MUCH sooner than they did. According to news reports, Menu Foods was alerted by pet owners about deaths and renal failure on February 20th, Menu Foods began their own tests February 27th where between 15%-20% of the pets they tested died, yet the recall was not announced until March 16th, THREE WEEKS AFTER they were first alerted of the deaths and health issues?!?!

I certainly hope to hear SOME type of logical explanation SOON from Menu Foods, but until then all I can assume is that $$$$ (especially since in their initial press release on 3/16/07 they repeatedly mention how much the recall could cost their company) and probable financial loss is what had Menu Foods dragging their feet, while their consumers were unknowingly feeding their beloved pets food which could possibly kill them, if not leave them with painful health issues and enormous veterinary bills which many owners cannot truly afford. I worked in the veterinary field for nearly 7 years and know the high cost of health care for pets, along with having had expensive medical situations with my own pets. But that is what pet owners do, they care for their pets as if they were members of their family, which they are (just four-legged instead of two-legged), and will put themselves into debt just to make sure their pets get the best care possible. Unfortunately there will be pets whose health care costs related to the issues from the tainted food will be too high for some owners to absorb, and they will then have to make the heartbreaking choice to have their beloved pet euthanized.

Come on Menu Foods, let’s get cracking on finding some solutions here. I think everyone understands that “accidents” and “mistakes” do happen in life, which might possibly explain how the food became tainted in the first place, but the part I’m having the hardest time understanding right now is why the recall took so long to be announced to consumers. What do you have to say Menu Foods? You have countless pet owners looking to you for answers.

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