Midwestern Pet Foods recall goes international, more than 110 dogs dead

January 28, 2021
dvm360 Staff

The recalled pet food products, which include several brands, may have been exported to 35 countries.

The pet food recall initiated earlier this month by Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc is now an international concern. On January 25, the FDA announced that pet food products containing potentially fatal levels of aflatoxin manufactured in the company’s Oklahoma plant may have been exported to 35 countries.

As of January 21, upwards of 110 dogs have died and 210 fell ill after consuming various Midwestern Pet Foods brands, although the FDA notes that aflatoxin poisoning has not yet been officially confirmed as the cause in all cases.

According to the FDA website, the recalled products may have been exported to Bahrain, Barbados, Chile, Costa Rica, Curacao, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, French Polynesia, Ghana, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Korea, Kuwait, Lebanon, Lithuania, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Singapore, Taiwan, Trinidad, Ukraine, UAE, Uruguay, and Vietnam.

Aflatoxins are toxins produced by the mold Aspergillus flavus, which can grow on grains used as ingredients in pet food. At high levels, aflatoxins can cause illness and death in pets. 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.

For a full list of recalled products, which includes more than 1000 lot codes, click here.

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.

This FDA is working with the state departments of agriculture for Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, and Washington to investigate the issue. New information will be released as it becomes available.