Mars pet food recall over Salmonella

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Another pet product has been recalled over fears it may be contaminated.

This time the product is dry dog food produced by Mars Petcare which is suspected to be contaminated with Salmonella Schwarzengrund.

The two dry dog food products are Krasdale Gravy dry dog food and Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula dry food and tests conducted by the FDA on 10 samples from seven products brands from the company revealed two positive samples of salmonella.

As a result Mars Petcare has voluntarily recalled five-pound bags of Krasdale Gravy dry dog food sold in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania with the UPC code 7513062596 and use by dates July 16, 2008 & July 17, 2008.

The 50-pound bags of Red Flannel Large Breed Adult Formula dry food sold in Pennsylvania have a UPC Code: 4286900062 and a use by date of July 12, 2008.

Although the threat may not appear to be such a concern for humans it should be remembered that Salmonella can be transferred to people handling pet food, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the product or any surfaces exposed to it.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says to date, there have been 64 cases of illness in humans related to Salmonella Schwarzengrund reported to authorities.

None of the reported cases have been directly linked to the recalled product and the FDA is working with local and state officials, and with officials at the CDC in the investigation.

Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and those with a weakened immune system.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain; sometimes the salmonella infection enters the bloodstream producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting; some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain.

Well animals can be carriers and infect other animals or humans and if your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, you are advised to contact your veterinarian.

This petfood scare is the latest in a plethora of warnings regarding pet products often originating from China which have included melamine in Chinese-made dog treats, contaminated fish food, pain killers in pet food, and many companies have been forced to recall products.

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