Midwestern Pet Foods expands recall after nearly 70 dog deaths

dvm360dvm360 February 2021
Volume 52

More than 1000 lot codes are now part of the widely expanded recall; 70 deaths and 80 illnesses have been reported in dogs to date, presumably caused by aflatoxin toxicity.

Ermolaev Alexandr / stock.adobe.com

Editor's Note: This recall has been expanded. Please visit this link to learn more.

The FDA announced yesterday that Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc has significantly expanded its recall of Sportmix brand pet foods due to potentially elevated levels of aflatoxin. The recall, first announced on December 30, 2020, now includes all pet food products containing corn that were manufactured in the company’s Oklahoma plant and have an expiration date on or before July 9, 2022.

This recall expansion, which affects more than 1000 lot codes, follows an alarming surge of consumer complaints of deaths and illnesses among dogs that consumed the affected pet foods. As of yesterday, 70 dogs have died and more than 80 fell ill after consuming Sportmix products, according to the FDA. It’s important to note that not all cases have been officially confirmed as aflatoxin poisoning. This count is approximate and may change as the situation develops.

Signs of aflatoxin poisoning include sluggishness, appetite loss, vomiting, jaundice, diarrhea, and, in severe cases, death. Some pets may suffer liver damage but have no clinical signs.

Below is a list of all the newly recalled products. The following pet foods have been recalled if the lot code has an expiration date on or before “07/09/22” and includes “05,” which identifies products made in the Oklahoma plant:

  • Pro Pac Adult Mini Chunk, 40-lb bag
  • Pro Pac Performance Puppy, 40-lb bag
  • Splash Fat Cat 32%, 50-lb bag
  • Nunn Better Maintenance, 50-lb bag
  • Sportmix Original Cat, 15-lb bag
  • Sportmix Original Cat, 31-lb bag
  • Sportmix Maintenance, 44-lb bag
  • Sportmix Maintenance, 50-lb bag
  • Sportmix High Protein, 50-lb bag
  • Sportmix Energy Plus, 44-lb bag
  • Sportmix Energy Plus, 50-lb bag
  • Sportmix Stamina, 44-lb bag
  • Sportmix Stamina, 50-lb bag
  • Sportmix Bite Size, 40-lb bag
  • Sportmix Bite Size, 44-lb bag
  • Sportmix High Energy, 44-lb bag
  • Sportmix High Energy, 50-lb bag
  • Sportmix Premium Puppy, 16.5-lb bag
  • Sportmix Premium Puppy, 33-lb bag

Pet owners should immediately stop feeding their pets the affected products and consult their veterinarian if their pet displayed any of the signs mentioned above. Additionally, the FDA advises pet owners to sanitize food bowls, scoops, and storage containers using bleach, rinsing well with water, and drying thoroughly.

Retailers should not sell or donate the affected products and should contact the manufacturer for further steps. If possible, retailers should contact consumers who have purchased the recalled products. Midwestern Pet Foods Consumer Affairs can be reached at 800-474-4163, ext. 455 from 7 am to 4 pm CT, Monday through Friday, or by email at info@midwesternpetfoods.com.

Veterinarians and pet owners who suspect aflatoxin poisoning should submit reports electronically through the FDA Safety Reporting Portal or by calling their state’s FDA Consumer Complaint Coordinators. Additionally, the FDA urges all veterinarians treating patients for aflatoxin poisoning to ask clients for a detailed diet history.

The FDA and the Missouri Department of Agriculture are working with Midwestern Pet Foods to determine whether any additional products may have been made with the same ingredients containing potentially fatal levels of aflatoxin. This investigation is ongoing and new information will be released as it becomes available.

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