As of January 29th, 2021, more than 100 dogs have died and 210 gotten sick from a food in connection with an FDA recall. Back on December 30th, 2020, Midwestern Pet Foods recalled certain lots of their Sportmix pet food after the FDA became alerted about at least 28 dogs that had died and eight that were sick after consuming this food. The Missouri Department of Agriculture tested multiple product samples and shockingly found very high and dangerous levels of aflatoxins. Aflatoxins are caused by the mold Aspergillus flavusand. When this toxin is presented in such high levels, it can cause illness and death in pets. But the mold doesn’t have to be physically seen for the toxin to be present.
Photo Credit: SportMix
So far, there have not been any reported cases of cats dying or becoming ill despite the recall including three cat products and cats actually being more susceptible to aflatoxin poisoning.
So what exactly are the symptoms of aflatoxin poisoning in pets?
Since pets usually eat the same food day after day, the toxin can continue to be ingested and enter their bloodstream and system, causing the symptoms to become worse and worse. If your pet has aflatoxin poisoning, they may experience some of the following symptoms:
Loss of appetite
What if you know your pet is eating the recalled food?
Pet owners whose pets have eaten the recalled food should contact their veterinarians whether they have symptoms or not. And while there is no evidence suggested that people can get aflatoxin poisoning from handling the food, it's suggested that you wash your hands after handling any pet food.
How do you know which foods are recalled exactly?