(NEXSTAR) – Health officials announced Thursday that several people, mostly babies, became ill after coming into contact with dog food involved in a growing recall due to potential contamination with salmonella.
The same day, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that the voluntary recall by Texas-based Mid America Pet Food now includes six types of cat foods as well as more than 25 dry dog foods.
So far, there have been at least seven documented illnesses and one hospitalization linked to dog food, spread across seven states: California, Oklahoma, Hawaii, Florida, Alabama, Kentucky and Minnesota. Because many cases of salmonella go unreported, the actual number of cases may be higher, according to the CDC.
“People involved in this outbreak became ill by touching recalled dog food, touching objects like dog bowls containing dog food, or touching the droppings or saliva of dogs fed dog food. dogs,” the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement. statement published online. “Most of the sick people in this outbreak are infants. »
Six of the seven cases involved children younger than 1 year old, and five cases reported exposure to dogs, according to the CDC. In three of the cases, Mid America’s Victor pet food was confirmed to have been fed to pets.
Additionally, the strain of salmonella that sickened all seven people was the same strain found in a sample of Victor brand dog food analyzed by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.
The CDC advises people to regularly clean their pet’s bowls and placemats, as well as their own hands before and after handling pet food or treats, and to make sure children wash properly too hands.
The FDA press release states that bags of Victor Super Premium dog food, Wayne Feeds dog food, Eagle Mountain pet food and certain Member’s Mark varieties with expiration dates before 10/31/24 may have been contaminated with salmonella at the company’s Mount Pleasant facility. .
See images of the recalled products below:
The latest recall expands on FDA announcements from September 3 and October 30 informing pet owners that the Texas manufacturer was recalling potentially harmful products. View the full list of recalled products here.
If you have purchased one of these food bags, the FDA advises that you throw it away immediately after placing it in a secure container where other animals, including wild animals, cannot access it.
You must clean and disinfect all pet supplies in the home, including storage containers, bowls, utensils, food preparation surfaces, pet bedding, litter boxes, toys , floors and any other surface with which food or animal may have come into contact. advises the FDA, adding that you should clean up feces in areas where other people or animals might be exposed.
According to the CDC, salmonella can cause serious illness and even death, especially in older people or people with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps. Pets may not show symptoms of salmonella infection, but they may experience vomiting, diarrhea (sometimes bloody), fever, loss of appetite, and decreased activity.
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