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If you have any of this dog food, throw it out immediately

Published Sep 8th, 2020 3:05PM EDT
dog food recall
Image: FDA

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  • The FDA has announced a voluntary recall of various dog food brands do to the possibility that they contain toxic mold at high levels.
  • The food was sold in multiple bag sizes and may make your dog sick.
  • Symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea as well as yellowed eyes and gums.

We humans have enough to worry about when it comes to staying healthy in 2020. The global coronavirus pandemic combined with a whole bunch of food recalls has left us with a lot to look out for if we want to stay in good health. Now, a new recall bulletin posted by the FDA reveals that we should be keeping a close eye on what we’re feeding our dogs, too, as a trio of pet food brands has been recalled over possibly elevated levels of a toxic fungus.

Sunshine Mills, Inc. has voluntarily recalled multiple sizes of three brands of its dog food. The brands include Family Pet, Heartland Farms, and Paws Happy Life. Specific flavors of those brands may have higher than acceptable levels of a mold called Aflatoxin which can cause health problems for pets that consume them.

The foods were sold in various bag sizes ranging from 4 lbs to 31 lbs, and include lot codes from April 3rd through April 5th, depending on the brand. You can check out the full list of products and their UPC codes on the FDA’s official bulletin.

“Aflatoxin is a naturally occurring mold by-product from the growth of Aspergillus flavus and can be harmful to pets if consumed in significant quantities,” the bulletin reads. “The potential for aflatoxin levels above the acceptable limit in these products was discovered by routine sampling performed by the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry showing that a sample of a single 4-pound bag of one lot of the product contained elevated levels of aflatoxin. No illnesses have been reported in association with these products to date, and no other Sunshine Mills, Inc. pet food products are affected by this announcement.”

The fact that no illnesses have been reported thus far is great news, but the potential for serious adverse effects is certainly present. If a pup falls ill due to elevated levels of the mold in their food they may experience a whole host of symptoms ranging from lethargy and the absence of a desire to eat to vomiting and diarrhea. A “yellowish tint to the eyes or gums” is also a potential indicator.

Obviously, if you have any of this pet food in your home you should throw it away immediately or return it to wherever you purchased it for a refund. The official bulletin page also includes contact information for the company if you have any questions or additional concerns. If you’ve fed some to your pet and you notice that they are acting differently, including but not limited to the symptoms above, it’s a good idea to contact your veterinarian and explain the situation.