Dog owners should use caution when buying Chicken Jerky products made in China for their pets. The FDA saw an increase in complaints from dog owners about dog illnesses associated with consumption of chicken jerky products imported from China in 2011. In September of 2007 the FDA had previously issued a warning regarding the chicken jerky products, but saw a drop in numbers during 2009 and 2010. FDA states on their website that since the issuance of the CVM Update on November 18, 2011, they have received numerous additional complaints regarding chicken jerky products.
The warning goes out for dried chicken jerky products intended for dogs which may also be sold as tenders, strips or treats. While no brand has been recalled, 22 “Priority 1” cases were listed by the FDA late last year, 13 were cited from Waggin’ Train or Canyon Creek Ranch jerky treats or tenders, both produced by Nestle Purina PetCare Co., the records show. MSNBC reported the other listed on a report obtained through a public records request was Milo’s Kitchen Home-style Dog Treats, produced by the Del Monte Corp. The rest listed single brands or no brand. A FDA spokeswoman said, “Priority 1 cases are those in which the animal is aged 11 or younger and medical records that document illness are available. In many cases, samples of the suspect treats also are collected.”
If a dog is fed a chicken-jerky product, the FDA urges it’s owners to monitor their behavior. According to the FDA website, signs of illness may occur anywhere from a few hours of eating the products to a few days. Dogs who have consumed the chicken jerky treats have reportedly suffered from decreased appetite and activity, vomiting, diarrhea which may contain blood, increased water consumption and increased urination. Some dogs have suffered from kidney problems that have resulted in death, but most have recovered from the illness.
Siobhan DeLancey, an FDA spokeswoman said, “We still invite owners and veterinarians to submit complaints and samples. The more information we have, the more likely we can find a link.”
Three different petitions have been demanding the recall of chicken jerky products made in China with more than 3,400 signatures from around the world. The co-founder of Animal Parents Against Pet Treats Made in China, Robin Pierre noted, “At the slightest doubt, these products should have been recalled, especially knowing there was a link or at the very least a caution/warning label put on the packaging warning the consumers.”
If your dog becomes ill, you should contact your veterinarian if the symptoms continue for more than 24 hours. Blood tests can be done to indicate a kidney failure (increased urea nitrogen and creatinine) and urine test could help indicate Fanconi-like syndrome (increased glucose). The FDA should be notified of your dogs illness through the Safety Reporting Portal. Owners should also retain the jerky package and any remaining pieces for possible testing by the FDA.