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Dog Food Recall Expanded Over Unsafe Levels of Aflatoxin

— October 15, 2020

A voluntary recall of certain types of dog food was recently expanded over unsafe levels of aflatoxin.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently decided to expand a recall of certain types of dog food over concerns they may contain unsafe levels of the toxin, aflatoxin. According to the federal agency, the toxin is a “byproduct of a type of mold (Aspergillus flavus) that can grow on grains commonly used in pet food.” When dogs consume large amounts of the toxin, it may cause sickness, liver issues, or death.

Caution graphic; image courtesy of geralt via Pixabay,

The manufacturer of the dog food is Sunshine Mills, Inc. The company issued the first voluntary recall back on September 2 when the “Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (DAF) found elevated levels of aflatoxin in a bag of dog food during routine sample testing.” In that first recall, only “12 lots of six different dog-food products” were affected.

Another FDA investigation into the matter “traced the products back to a single load of corn containing high levels of aflatoxin that was used as an ingredient in products manufactured from April 3 to April 5, 2020, and distributed to retailers nationwide.” The recall was then expanded on October 8 to include “other products made with the load of corn, adding multiple lots of 21 additional products from 15 more brands.”

At the moment, the Louisiana DAF and FDA are investigating the matter and may add additional products to the recall list. Customers who have the recalled product in their home should stop feeding it to their pets immediately and throw it away. Pets exhibiting symptoms of aflatoxin poisoning should be taken to the veterinarian immediately. Symptoms of aflatoxin poisoning include diarrhea, lethargy, loss of appetite, jaundice, and vomiting. In rare cases, pets may experience more severe effects, including liver damage and death. In addition to taking pets to the veterinarian, owners should also sanitize their dog’s “food dishes, scoops, and storage containers.”

For now, Sunshine Mills is urging customers to return any unused packages of recalled products for a full refund.


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