Recalled/Not

Recalled, no illnesses reported:

Diamond Naturals Lamb Meal & Rice. This is being done as a precautionary measure, as the product has the potential to be contaminated with salmonella. No illnesses have been reported and no other Diamond manufactured products are affected.

Not recalled, hundreds of illnesses (and some deaths) reported:

  • Waggin’ Train (made by Nestle Purina)
  • Canyon Creek Ranch jerky treats or tenders (made by Nestle Purina)
  • Milo’s Kitchen Home-style Dog Treats (made by Del Monte)

A log of complaints collected from pet owners and veterinarians contains references to at least three popular brands of jerky treats that may be associated with kidney failure and other serious ailments, according to internal Food and Drug Administration documents obtained by msnbc.com.

[…]

“No specific products have been recalled because a definitive cause has not been determined,” FDA officials said in a statement.

Nestle Purina and Del Monte both maintain their chicken jerky treats are safe.  Those of us who endured the massive 2007 pet food recall are accustomed to hearing such assurances which sooner or later result in recalled products.

It is very easy to make your own dog treats (sample recipe here).  You can also share your own food with your dogs as treats.  It’s a good use for stuff that’s gone stale from the cupboards (crackers, corn chips, cereal) and you can also give fruit/veggie pieces (apples, bananas, carrots).  By making your own treats you have complete knowledge and control over what ingredients are in the treats, which is useful for owners of dogs with food sensitivities as well as those wanting peace of mind.

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14 Comments

  1. Salette Ann Andrews

     /  April 10, 2012

    I have transitioned my pack to completely organic, home-prepared food, and they love it.

    Reply
  2. Lisa B

     /  April 10, 2012

    I make beef heart jerky treats. I semi-freeze it so I can slice it thin, soak it in lemon or lime juice for a few hours, then drape it over the oven rack and bake on low, low temp overnight. The dogs LOVE it.

    Reply
  3. I have personally removed the Waggin’ Train from the shelves in a few local grocery stores . I explained to the store managers what is happening and they all took it down. The following “rule of thumb” has not changed, just the way companies try to hide it. DO NOT BUY ANY FOOD OR TREATS MADE IN CHINA. “Distributed by” is not the same as” Made in ”
    If you can’t tell, do not buy it.

    Reply
    • “If you can’t tell, don’t buy it.”

      AGREED.

      But don’t stop there. Get on the phone. Call the company.

      If they can’t tell you exactly where each and every ingredient came from, where it was processed and how, where it’s packaged, etc – don’t buy their product.

      There are thousands of products available to us today – it’s not hard to find a few key items you can rely on if you’re thorough. Also, approach your local mom and pop pet stores – they will likely be willing to order in a particular product for you, especially if you’re already a customer. We order cases of certain items if they don’t want to carry them (some products must be ordered in quantity). It’s a bit expensive at the outset, but I don’t have time to make treats every week, and in the long run the money you save buying in bulk can make up for it.

      Reply
  4. I’m not normally a fan of Diamond, but at least they’re doing a recall where the others aren’t.

    I’ve been making my own “jerky” treats for most of a year now. Anyone with a food dehydrator or an oven that they don’t mind being tied up for 6+ hrs can dehydrate any meat they can buy at the grocery store, just cut it up into bite sizes and spread them out onto a cookie sheet, set your oven to 200 or less and let them dry. My dogs love them, and its actually cheaper than buying the premade stuff anyway.

    Reply
  5. Eucritta

     /  April 10, 2012

    There’ve also been reports about trouble with sweet potato treats made in China sold as Beefeaters, Drs Foster & Smith & Doggie Veggie Life:
    http://poisonedpets.com/2012/04/06/alert-vets-warn-about-new-treats-from-china-poisoning-dogs/

    Sweet potato jerky is easy to make, though: wash & peel a sweet potato, cut it lengthwise into slices about 1/4 to 1/3 inch thick, line them up on a cookie sheet (I use baking paper to keep them from sticking) and bake at 250F for three hours or so until they’re mostly dry but still maleable & chewy. Cool completely, then bag up & stick them in the fridge.

    In the fresh veggie line, I’ve found my dog adores cabbage & cauliflower, especially the stems.

    Reply
  6. animalnewsinfo

     /  April 10, 2012

    Food for humans not safe either: “Arsenic Found in Factory-Farmed Chicken & Rice”

    http://www.care2.com/greenliving/friday-freak-out-chicken-and-rice-and-arsenic.html

    Try to buy organic grown food if you can. Huge companies only care about $$$.

    Reply
  7. Jennifer

     /  April 11, 2012

    The companies and/or the FDA would have to pay to have the treats analyzed to see what ingredients are actually in them so I doubt they would have it done.

    Reply
    • Eucritta

       /  April 11, 2012

      They’ve done numerous tests on the treats in question, and according to the FDA, none have turned up a culprit. Here’s the FDA’s Q&A page on it:
      http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth
      /ProductSafetyInformation/ucm295445.htm

      Basically, they know chicken jerky treats from China are strongly associated with debilitating illness and death in pets, but since they haven’t yet identified why, it’s up to the companies whether or not to recall them. And we know what’s happened with that.

      From the black, black humor department: Nestle-Purina insists the treats are safe if ‘given as directed.’ Never mind that last *I* looked, over-feeding of home-made chicken treats never did anything except promote pudge.

      Reply
      • Eucritta

         /  April 11, 2012

        Ack, that link somehow got mangled. Here it is in corrected form:
        http://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/SafetyHealth/ProductSafetyInformation/ucm295445.htm

      • Isn’t that the best excuse ever?

        “We’re sorry your dog diet, ma’am – but you fed him three whole treats a day, and our packaging clearly says 2 1/2 maximum.”

        As for the “no culprit found,” well let me be the first to say that this will be some kind of preservative, colour or fake nutrient (melamine for protein anyone?).

        Knowing how frequently pet food in the US is mislabeled, I wouldn’t be surprised to find out they’re not even chicken.

        Last year I blogged about Natural Balance, Nature’s Variety, Eukanuba and Evangers. All had been busted mislabeling allergy foods. For example, Eukanuba Venison and Potato contained Poultry and Soy!

        Honestly, we’re then surprised that pet foods from China are unsafe? I say halt ALL the imports and get the system here in North America cleaned up first.

        Did I mention that pet food companies were recently fined in the EU for price fixing? Nestle, Mars and Colgate-Palmolive were all found guilty. Collectively they own Purina, Nutro, Pedigree, Whiskas, Sheba, Cesar, Temptations, Royal Canin and Hill’s.

        Ever wonder why that bag of corn, peanut hulls and wheat middlings are so expensive? Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain…

        Ok, climbing down off teh box…

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