Bad news for you animal lovers out there—the FDA is saying chicken jerky pet treats imported from China over the last five years to the US and Canada are being blamed for hundreds of deaths and thousands of cases of illness in dogs.
It is estimated that nearly 86 million pounds of pet food was imported to Canada and the US from China in 2011.
To date, product samples have been tested for all contaminants that may underlie the cause of the illness and deaths, but no one’s quite sure what’s making the animals sick.
The majority of pets had gastrointestinal signs, including vomiting and diarrhea, sometimes with blood and/or mucus.
More severe symptoms are pancreatitis and gastrointestinal bleeding.
Cases have been reported from all 50 US states and 6 Canadian provinces in the past 18 months.
Pet treats, including jerky pet treats are currently considered the fastest growing segment in the pet food market.
The FDA is now expanding its testing to include irradiation byproducts and is in consultation with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) experts to discuss this possibility further.
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