The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning pet owners about dog treats linked to thousands of deaths and illnesses.
More than 1,000 dog deaths have been linked to chicken, duck or sweet potato jerky treats, mostly imported from China.
Nearly 5,000 dogs have gotten sick from the treats.
For the first time, investigators say three people got sick from the treats as well.
Two of those were toddlers who ingested them accidentally.
One of those children contracted salmonella from touching the jerky treat.
From the complaints, the FDA has been able to breakdown symptoms:
- Approximately 60 percent of the cases report gastrointestinal/liver disease
- 30 percent kidney or urinary disease
- The remaining 10 percent of complaints including various other signs such as neurologic, dermatologic, and immunologic symptoms
- About 15 percent of the kidney or urinary cases also tested positive for Fanconi syndrome, a rare kidney disease that has been associated with this investigation
The FDA has been studying this issue since 2007, but still hasn’t been able to identify a specific reason pets are getting sick. They’ve now asked the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for help.
The FDA offers this advice when it comes to your pet:
- Signs that may occur within hours to days of feeding the jerky treat products are decreased appetite, decreased activity, vomiting, diarrhea, increased water consumption and/or increased urination.
- Severe cases are diagnosed with pancreatitis, gastrointestinal bleeding, and kidney failure or the resemblance of a rare kidney related illness called Fanconi syndrome.
- If your pet has experienced signs of illness, please report it to FDA.
Unfortunately, the sicknesses are isolated to one particular brand or manufacturer. However, a common link appears to be that they are mostly imported from China