It can be very scary to discover that your dog or cat food or treats are involved in a recall. Pet foods and treats are typically recalled because of possible contamination by salmonella, mold, or other dangerous contaminants or because there could be foreign objects in the products. Your canine or feline friend could get ill, or even die, from consuming a tainted product.
Although most cat and dog food recalls don’t result in widespread harm, a 2007 multi-brand recall resulted in widespread animal deaths and cases of kidney failure. The problem was caused by wheat gluten traced back to a Chinese company. Currently, chicken jerky dog treats from China are under suspicion. There’s a huge pool of anecdotal evidence that they can cause illness or death. Although there’s no definitive evidence.
Stop Using the Product as soon as You Find out about the Recall
It may go without saying that you should immediately stop using any recalled dog or cat food or treats, but make sure everyone in your family is aware of the situation. Immediately move the product out of the pantry or other area where you normally store your pet’s food and goodies. This prevents others from accidentally using it if they don’t know about the recall yet.
Find out Why the Product Has Been Recalled
Pet products are recalled for a variety of reasons. For example, a recent cat food recall involved a product that might not contain enough of an essential nutrient. While that’s not good, it means there’s no danger in handling the food to dispose of it.
However, other recalls over the past few months have involved potential salmonella contamination. Such pet foods and treats should be handled with care because of the potential danger to both humans and animals.
If you find out about the recall from the media, the reason will probably be stated in the report. If not, do some research online. Companies generally list specific information about recalls on their websites, and the Food and Drug Administration also posts information on a special recall web page. Most companies provide a toll-free number to call with any questions.
Dispose of the Food Properly
You may be directed to return the food to the place of purchase for a refund, or you may be able to simply throw it away and get your money back with a receipt. When the latter is true, be very careful about how you dispose of the recalled product.
Put the food into a plastic bag and seal it, then discard it in a covered trash can. If your outdoor trash bin isn’t covered, other animals might get into the food and get ill. If you’re concerned about coming into contact with something toxic, like salmonella, wear gloves when doing the disposal.
Clean Your Pet’s Food Bowls and Eating Area
When a recall involves a containment, you’ll want to thoroughly scrub your cat or dog feeding dishes and the area when you serve up the food.
If you use dishwasher safe pet bowls, run them through a disinfecting cycle. Clean the floor or other surface where you place the bowls with a good household disinfectant.
Watch Your Pet for Any Suspicious Symptoms
If your dog or cat ate any of the affected food or treats, be on the alert for signs of illness. The company’s web page may list possible effects. If not, look them up online or call your veterinarian and ask about potential symptoms.
For example, salmonella is a common reason for cat and dog food recalls, and it can cause the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, fever, lethargy, abdominal pain and cramps, and diarrhea that may be bloody. Take your pet to the vet immediately if it shows any of these signs after eating suspect food.
Don’t immediately panic if your pet shows a mild stomach upset, especially if you had to switch to a different food brand because of the recall. Changing to something with different ingredients may cause some transitional issues. Obviously, you’ll want your vet to check things out, but the tummy trouble might have an innocuous cause. About the author: William S Andrews, a personal development coach. He likes helping people cope with their problems. In this case, William has his own section on the website of write my paper service. Moreover, he takes part in various conferences to improve his knowledge and develop new skills.