Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Doggie-death mystery

  • Print

WASHINGTON -- The Food and Drug Administration is trying to solve a stubborn mystery surrounding the deaths of almost 600 dogs that ate jerky treats, and officials are hoping pet owners and veterinarians can help them figure out what may be causing the illnesses.

The problem appears to be tied to dog pet treats made in China, the FDA said, though investigators haven't found a certain cause. The FDA says it has received reports of illnesses in 3,600 dogs and 10 cats in the United States since 2007, and 580 dogs died. The pet treats were sold under a wide variety of brand names.

The complaints were sent in by pet owners, some of them unsure of the cause of their pet's illness. But many others were sent in by veterinarians who have seen repeated cases of kidney failure, gastrointestinal bleeding and a rare kidney disorder, the FDA said.

FDA veterinarian Martine Hartogensis said the agency is appealing to pet owners and veterinarians to send them more information on animals who may have got sick after eating the treats. Pets can suffer from a decreased appetite, decreased activity, vomiting and diarrhea, among other symptoms, within hours of eating treats sold as jerky tenders or strips made of chicken, duck, sweet potatoes or dried fruit.

"This has been one of the most mysterious and elusive issues we've had to investigate," Hartogensis said. She said the investigation has been particularly complicated because researchers haven't been able to pin down what ingredient may be causing the problem and because many of the treats and their ingredients are imported.

Dr. Richard Goldstein of the Animal Medical Center in New York said he has been investigating the illnesses since they appeared to begin in 2007, and he is still treating dogs that seem to suffer from the mysterious condition.

The FDA has issued previous warnings, and a number of jerky pet treat products were removed from the market in January after a New York state lab reported finding evidence of up to six drugs in certain jerky pet treats made in China. The products removed from the market then included Milo's Kitchen Chicken Jerky Treats and Chicken Grillers, made by Del Monte, and Waggin' Train and Canyon Creek Ranch dog treats, made by Nestlé Purina.

But others remain on store shelves, and FDA doesn't want to conduct a recall without a definitive cause.

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 24, 2013 B9

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Keri Latimer looks for beauty in the dark and the spaces between the notes

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Local-(Standup photo)- A wood duck swims through the water with fall refections in Kildonan Park Thursday afternoon.
  • horse in sunset - marc gallant

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Should the city grant mosquito buffer zones for medical reasons only?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google